Leland Stein III

Lochte: Reality versus real reality. iGeneration and some of the Millennials take notice.

In Uncategorized on August 20, 2016 at 9:44 pm


By Leland Stein III

First the Millennials and now Gen Z (also known as iGeneration or Homeland Generation) are unfortunately engulfed by the unreality of life.

me at USA basketball

Leland Stein III

When I say reality, I am not talking about Webster’s definition, but in today’s literal sense. USA’s decorated swimmer Ryan Lochte, 32, is a victim of the Reality TV generation, or should I say cohort. After all he did have a Reality TV show of his own, and that probably has distorted his real sense of what is reality.

Somewhere along the lifeline he forgot what is real and what a reality show is. I do not completely blame him, but I do blame the iGeneration and some of the Millennials for his warped sense of reality. Then again it is not all their fault, it is the present American culture that is spewing negatives on how to engage one’s fellow human in discourse and how to elevate one’s life monetarily.

The fact of the matter is today’s TV Reality Shows do not help those generations engage positively in conflict resolution management, or help them understand reality versus . . ., or simply what is a real methodology to uplift one’s life. It is all too easy to lie, scream, fabricate, and fight one’s way to glory.

Lochte originally said he and three other USA swimmers were robbed at gunpoint during a taxi ride back to the Olympic Village last Sunday. He got fellow swimmers Jack Conger 21, Gunnar Bentz 20 and James Feigen 26, caught up in the web of deceit that Lochte expounded to all that would listen.

Soon after Lochte’s account of getting robbed, it was quickly disputed by Brazilian authorities who said their investigation revealed an altercation had occurred between the swimmers and security guards at a gas station.

Lochte’s robbery story then went from unbelievable to simply not believable.

Why would Lochte fabricate such a story when he was already a celebrity. Well, it is just his generation that seeks its fame any way it can, truth be dammed.

He initially told NBC News that he and his teammates were returning home from a party when they were robbed at gunpoint by men who appeared to be police officers. Lochte said the gun was held to his head and he refused the assailants’ order to get on the ground — while the other three complied. Wow, he made himself out to be the tough guy and hero in his fabrication.

But the facts soon presented itself as security cameras showed the swimmers were stopped by security after they vandalized a bathroom (kicking in a door, tearing things off the wall and peeing anywhere). When the security guard reportedly asked the men to pay for the damages, the swimmers allegedly resisted, leading to the security guard to draw his gun and demand payment.

The security guard took the money and let the guys go.

Wow, end of story! No police and no press involved. They should have been happy as pigs in slop. But oh no, Lochte tells his mother that lie of a story that makes him look like a victim and hero.

Wrote an AP reporter from Rio: “Lochte’s conceit intersected with a delicate political issue, and it made a perfect storm. His claim to NBC that men posing as police pulled over the taxi and he heroically resisted the robbers with a gun pressed to his forehead was an especially ludicrous detail — and the very thing that drew the attention of authorities, who know full well that anyone who defies a bandit in Rio gets shot on the spot, and they don’t leave you with your cellphone.”

Sure Rio has some crime issues, just like the United States, and with the entire world there and millions more around the word watching, Brazil took the lie personal, and rightfully so.

Lochte was able to depart from Rio following the incident, but Bentz and Conger were pulled off their return flight for questioning. The two arrived back on U.S. soil a couple days later after paying a fine and finally telling the truth to police officials.

It is hard to wrap my mind around why would a person lie like that to the world? It goes back to the reality generation and it in quest for notoriety. “Just Do It” not matter the cost to others, in this case an entire country (Brazil), the USOC, and Lochte’s teammates.

Lochte issued a half butt apology that was weak as water.

He wrote: “It’s traumatic to be out late with your friends in a foreign country — with a language barrier — and have a stranger point a gun at you and demand money to let you leave, but regardless of the behavior of anyone else that night, I should have been much more responsible in how I handled myself and for that I am sorry to my teammates, my fans, my fellow competitors, my sponsors, and the hosts of this great event.”

Lochte’s traumatize in another country? Well, he has traveled the entire world for years and knows how to handle himself. He never mentioned in his apology the vandalism he engaged in or simply said he lied. There wasn’t a robbery or gun to his head or police in a cab or sideswiped by the robbers or the others were put on the ground at gun point while he stood tall and challenged the assailants. It never happened!!

Fernando Veloso, the Rio Civil Police chief, said that Lochte had “stained” the city by inventing a crime that didn’t happen.

Said a USOC spokesperson: “On behalf of the United States Olympic Committee, we apologize to our hosts in Rio and the people of Brazil for this distracting ordeal in the midst of what should rightly be a celebration of excellence.”

What a reality lesson for Millennials and the iGeneration who believes yelling, screaming, lying, self-aggrandizement and winning at any cost are the ways to elevate one’s station in life.

It is strange because the Millennials and iGeneration work hard, educate themselves and want things; however, there methodologies to achieve their aims are out of whack.

Lochte is a poster boy for self-first, wanting the spotlight and juvenilism. Reality versus reality is getting lost in this generation and nothing good will come from it.

Leland Stein can be reached at lelstein3@aol.com or Twitter @LelandSteinIII


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