Wednesday, 3 February 2010

What is more important: the job or the morals?

Yesterday my husband and I had an argument about football.

This is, I am glad to say, a rarity - principally because neither of us likes football. And neither of us argue much. (Well, he doesn't. I rant and rave and fling my arms around and shout the house down ... and then recognise he's right and retreat into a corner.)

Anyway, our discussion was about the topic of the moment: should John Terry retain his role as captain?

I don't care. I believe his private life is that: private. If he has affairs with every woman in town, but can still play football, then he should retain his job. In an office situation, would he lose his job because he had an extramarital affair? I doubt it.

My husband argues that he has to retain the respect of the players, of his team and, in his particular job, his country. Perhaps he doesn't have that any more.

Reflecting on it, I think we are both right. I think that even in an office, having a fling with your colleague's ex would put a lot of strain and tension on the staff. Whilst you may not be sacked, you may think it time to look for a job elsewhere. Of course, in football that is more difficult. It's not as though he can take on the captaincy of another country!

But the higher you rise, the further you can fall.

I am reading Wolf Hall at the moment: the Booker Prize winner by Hilary Mantel about Thomas Cromwell. Cardinal Wolsey has fallen from grace: his powers have been taken away from him as King Henry VIII seeks some way to divorce Katherine of Aragon and marry Anne Boleyn. Wolsey is ruined because of this; and I know that, in the end, Cromwell will also be brought low. Again and again through history we see the mighty come unstuck, unravelled, undone ... brought down to earth for misdemeanours that may, or may not, be their fault.

Why Terry had his fling I will never know. I am delighted that we still live in a society that has some morals and that views his behaviour as fundamentally wrong. The furore surrounding his affair is a salutary reminder that no-one is above reproach nor incapable of sin ... and that respect is earned by considerably more than just your skill at the job.


On a much more cheery note, take a look at the British Mummy Blogger's Carnival. It is now live on Insomniac Mummy's blog. There are many excellent posts to have a look at, including me - right at the end of the main course, just before you start desserts...


Brit in Bosnia / Fraught Mummy said...

Oh John Terry. Such a silly boy. Makes you want to shake him. But, like you, I'm pleased that society still disapproves of his behaviour, even though the footballers world cup chances would be better without the furore.

Did you see Very Bored In Catalunia also did a post on this?

As someone who loves football and is doing a PhD in football related stuff, I'm delighted you are all coming over to my way of thinking.. ah hem!

cheshire wife said...

John Terry should resign as England captain. A lot of young children look up to him and will now think that cheating on your wife is OK. It isn't. In his position he has to be squeaky clean.

Muddling Along Mummy said...

That's really interesting because I hadn't thought of it in terms of a 'proper' job !

My knee jerk reaction was he should step down BUT if he is the best footballer and a really good captain how does his personal life actually impact his ability to kick a ball around a pitch

Ideally he'd not be knocking around !

Catharine Withenay said...

It took Fabio just 12 minutes to sack him.
Morals, or team spirit?

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