So there were a couple of surprises in OJ Simpson news last week.
It was not a surprise that the former NFL star was paroled, set to become a free man in October.
It was a surprise that he’s 70 years old. This senior citizen, who might even be described by some as “elderly,” is still an arrogant criminal who many believe got away with murder.
It was a surprise that the parole hearing was broadcast on ESPN. But it was not a surprise that people watched it. And all the “Juice is loose” posts on social media – we all saw that coming, right?
I don’t really think anyone believes that OJ didn’t kill his ex-wife, the late Nicole Brown Simpson, and her companion Ron Goldman in 1994. I was in high school at the time and remember watching the live chase of the white Bronco. It’s now credited as one of the first times that TV news stations implemented the 24-hour news cycle.
How crazy is it that someone who had so much fame and wealth would take the risks he took? And doesn’t it imply guilt when you go on the run from authorities shortly after your ex-wife has been murdered? Yet somehow he was acquitted. Then, in 2008, the dummy goes and steals sports memorabilia from a hotel room in Vegas.
Did he need the money? Possibly. But sadly, I believe there are many people in this world who would make personal sacrifices to ensure that the football legend is fed, clothed and comfortable. Heck, his buddy Al Cowlings was never charged for driving that getaway Bronco, claiming Simpson was pointing a gun to his head.
All these years later, the whole story baffles me. He could be living a comfortable life as a millionaire in a California mansion, surrounded by all the beauty and material possessions a man could ask for. But greed and a series of poor decisions changed his life – and the lives of many, many others.
Most of us fortunately won’t find ourselves in scenarios where we’re contemplating double murder or whether to orchestrate an armed robbery. But we are faced with choices on a daily basis, and we can choose to do the right thing.
Many of us are not idolized in the sports world, but someone out there looks up to us and watches how we navigate life. Sometimes doing the right thing isn’t as easy or as fun, but it’s right.
April Towery is the managing editor of The Sealy News. She can be reached at (979) 885-3562 or firstname.lastname@example.org.