Tuesday, July 7, 2009
Many of you were probably as shocked as I was at the news of Steve McNair's murder. If you don't know the details here is the condensed (Cliff's Notes!) version: Steve McNair former NFL MVP, a married father of four, was apparently shot by his 20 year old girlfriend who then killed herself.
When the news of this first broke I heard many people classify it as a tragedy, and I would agree that there are tragic elements to it. It is tragic that two people died by being shot. It is tragic that one person killed another person. It is tragic that four young men will grow up without their father. It is tragic that a young lady with many years ahead of her decided to end her own life. Even considering all of those things it is hard for me to call what happened to Steve McNair a tragedy. In my mind a tragedy is something that was unavoidable and often unexpected. The murder of five people in Gaffney last week, one of which was a 15 year old girl, was a tragedy. If Steve McNair had been home last week with his wife and four boys and someone came into their home and shot him that would have been a tragedy, but the hard truth is that if he had been home with his wife he would still be alive. That's why I can't call his death a tragedy. It was avoidable. If he had put his marriage and kids before his own desires everything would be different now.
Another sad part of this story is that up until last week, McNair was known for his toughness, his community involvement, and his devotion to his family. Now he will be forever remembered for the way his life ended, instead of for what he accomplished.