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Is the media being too hard on Phelps?

Submitted by on February 3, 2009 – 12:07 pm20 Comments

The picture that sparked Michael Phelps’ recent drama

Over the past couple of days, Olympic gold medalist Michael Phelps has been disgraced by the media over a picture of him taking a bong hit.

According to Foxnews.com, he was quoted saying:

“I engaged in behavior which was regrettable and demonstrated bad judgment. I’m 23 years old, and despite the successes I’ve had in the pool, I acted in a youthful and inappropriate way, not in a manner that people have come to expect from me. For this, I am sorry. I promise my fans and the public it will not happen again.”

He has been outspoken in the past against drugs, and been supportive of WADA, the World Anti-Doping Agency.

Michael was also in the media spotlight recently over his relationship with a Las Vegas stripper and excessive partying. The concern now is that this may be the last straw or “career suicide” for him.

Is this just a young man who is enjoying the limelight and experimenting with things that normal 23 year-olds do?  Or is he a hypocrite that should suffer the consequences of his behavior?

Image: Gawker

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  • Chris J The Genius says:

    He became an instant celebrity at his first Olympic run, and then with the Beijing Olympics he was launched into the stratosphere. Dude was bound to get caught up in that fast life. If you’re not very careful, you’ll lose EVERYTHING you have to the bad habits that get made in that kind of lifestyle. Anyway, if he had a certain other characteristic (I’ll let you guess), they would be trying to strip him of everything he had won by now. He should be glad he’s only getting criticized. Muhammad Ali would have killed for mere criticism in his prime.

  • LovelyOne says:

    I dont care what anyone says but theres a lot of people who cover their “habits”……………………….

  • jbeezy says:

    He definitely should not be stripped of any his athletic success. Bad move on his part but he is not taking or has not tested positive for any performance enhancing drugs.

  • fameboy23 says:

    on the real…everybody has either tried it or will end up trying it and if you haven’t or won’t then who are you to say it’s such a bad dug…as far as phelps goes…the guy is 23 he’s still a kid yea he has an image to uphold being an amazing athlete and all but the fact remains he’s a young guy and still a kid, he is going to make mistakes. we all make mistakes….and he just made one and got screwed over by an ex-girlfriend..nooooot cool…but he’s still a way cool guy in my eyes

  • Russ says:

    He can do what he wants in his own private life! F*CK the media and the World! They can’t tell no one how to live their lives! We can do as we please! Whomever took that if I were him at the moment would have taken the camera and deleted it and asked what the hell are you doing. Plus, whomever posted that to the World, I would kick their A**!

  • Zacchaeus Drake says:

    Michael is human and makes mistakes just like everyone else sometimes you just get caught up he is SORRY people should just MOVE ON.

  • C.C. says:

    Yeah it was a bad move but who is anyone to judge him???? Zacchaeus is right, he’s human and everyone should just move on. My thing is, they elected George Bush for 2 terms (8 yrs.) and within those 2 terms, he sent the U.S. down a big toilet bowl of failure and an economic downspiral. I bet anything the same people who kept Bush in office are the same people who make a big deal about stuff like this. So yeah, I’m pretty sure they know about hypocricy.

  • t-bone says:


  • yoyo says:

    he should be hitting dutches instead..

  • Chloe says:

    I feel that the media is too hard on Michael Phelps. I love him and I feel that a 23 year old man will behave that way. When your in the spotlight, you are forced to grow up to fast and I feel that they should be able to live their lives as they want to. I love the fact that someone caught it on camera also and sold it to the media. The famous people have no friends and they are always done wrong. I think that he should be able to do as he feel and live his life. You only have one and if you live it for everyone else, you will not enjoy it.

  • KAREN says:

    c’mon who hasn’t smoked weed please leave him alone!!!!!!!!!!

  • shelly says:

    oh come on!! the man took a bong it… whats the big deal?
    he is just anther youth doing what youths do
    america is too quick to put people on this high pedistal and just as quick knock them down
    beside weed is good for you lol!!!!!!

  • Janae says:

    oh so what nobody is perfect. leave him alone

  • Jah_Bless_Up says:

    ganja man..buss puss hole dem a fah fun.. crosses. de man a get de og kush. highest grade rude boy!

  • kris says:

    i doubt this is a career suicide for him. i don’t think anyone, especially the olympics, should worry because if anything, smoking pot should hinder his performance.

  • Dave P. says:

    Yo Mike you work hard so you play hard…I find nothing wrong with what you do as long as you don’t get tested positive on drugs or get chicks pregnant, unless you use some rubber. Leave the man alone, he does what other youths do.

    Imagine if Mike Phelps is black, he’ll be under more scrutiny. Remember when a pic of AZ back-up QB Matt Leinhart taken in his house, doing the beer bong and surrounded w/ scantily-clad women, the main news networks didn’t made a big deal about it. In fairness, this kinda news was around for a while but it mattered little to the media, but when Cowboys CB Adam “Pacman” Jones was caught for his crimes, the media swarmed around the issue like vultures looking for a dead carcass….looks like there’s a little bit of racism in media…..

    I don’t think Mr. Phelps should be disgraced about his actions. the man didn’t do anything wrong….he’s just having some fun.

  • nikkie says:

    he gets caught doing his habit where others dont. so he is going to have to live with the media being his judge, jury, and executioner. hate it for him. he has natural talent

  • brianna says:

    i think everybody is takin all this too far!!
    people make mistakes nd i think he shudd be forgivin for it.
    every trys sum kind of drug at least once in yur life.
    nd if not good for yu.
    i forgive him for it.

  • unknownnnnn says:

    phelps gets caught doing something and since hes a celebrity he gets dogged out for it. but if someone else gets caught thats not a celebrity its totally different. guhhh. but whateverrr

  • On one hand yeah they are, but on the other hand he should’ve known. He was a hero in many of america’s eyes. But i’m thinkin now he should kick it with snoop, bill clinton and methodman just to mess with the media.

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