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RGIII: A Leader for Positive Change On and Off the Field

by Chris Lingebach
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WASHINGTON (CBSDC) - Robert Griffin III has taken the sports world by storm since arriving in the Nation’s Capital, and an interest taken in him by local media has reached the point of full-on infatuation.

It’s undeniable that this obsession derives from his on-the-field performance, works its way into our souls with the flash of his smile, before being metastasized to the top of our collective brain until every hour of our day is consumed by RGIII and what’s happening in his life.

The truth is, it’s none of our business. But the even sadder truth: we ignore that truth at every turn, yielding to each temptation to pry just a little further into his world, making it our own and living off it like symbionts.

Don’t be confused, though. It’s a two-way street.

RGIII has the power to utilize the media to his advantage at his willing, and use it to personally cultivate and crop his own legend – the likes of which Michael Jordan and LeBron James could admire from afar, while perched atop their own self-made thrones.

But perhaps today of all days – our nation’s day of Independence from British tyranny – is the perfect time to recognize this type of power comes with a tremendous burden of responsibility.

RGIII commands the type of attention which requires him to be as big a leader off the field, as he is on it, and the level to which he fulfills this moral obligation is what we should really be fascinated with.

He has the freedom to be anything he wants to be, and yet he chooses to be an exemplary role model for children, adolescents, and fully grown adults alike, living a life of envy which extends far beyond his wallet.

Just take a look at his Twitter timeline.

In an era in which NFL players value their offseasons, to the point in which voluntary workouts are now truly voluntary, RGIII brings teammates together virtually, forming a cohesion which bonds them together through Retweets and shout-outs 12 months out of the year.

As the old cliché goes, the test of a man’s mettle is determined by what he does when no one’s watching, or something to that effect.

This doesn’t work for RGIII. People are always watching. Everyone is always watching.

So he chooses to use the attention for good.

Take for example, this tweet from Wednesday afternoon.

Griffin has the freedom to promote/ignore whatever he wants to his near million followers.

And yet he chooses to honor the life of a woman he knew to be great. Although 24 hours ago she was completely unknown to most of us, a simple tweet commemorating the impact she had on his life made her live on in all of ours. How great is that?

If we’re to idolize our athletes and mimic their every move, let’s do it at the risk of making a positive impact on the world.

Most of us don’t have a million Twitter followers, but we are all faced with opportunities to incite positive change in our own little way.

Thank a soldier for protecting our freedom with more than a passive “thank you for your service.”

Look them in the eye, shake their hand and thank them for doing something you’d never have the courage to do yourself.

Then mail a care package to a soldier overseas, because that’s doing something. In fact, here’s a website to make the process a little more seamless.

It may feel odd to take a step beyond the casual thank you, however, this is something we have the freedom to every single day in the United States of America, and we shouldn’t take that for granted.

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