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Do Professional Athletes have Social Obligation to Act as Positive Role Models? (Essay Sample)


write a formal persuasive essay following a classical pattern to written argument. Your position will be clearly defined, your appeal will be primarily logical, and your claim will be convincingly supported by empirical evidence (evidence based on observation/experience). In keeping with classical argument, one paragraph must anticipate and respond to a likely objection (counter-argument paragraph). Theological or philosophical arguments are not permitted, as they are based on a process of reasoning unique to those disciplines and not covered in this course.
A very clear and concise thesis statement


Do professional athletes have a social obligation to act as positive role models?
Celebrities attract a lot of attention and publicity from the public. Professional athletes and entertainers are always in the limelight and are judged by their actions on and off the public space. With the proliferation of contemporary mass media: internet, newspapers, television, and cinema, promotion and circulation of general knowledge about celebrities is always a click away. Thanks to the various social media platforms, celebrities and professional athletes can currently engage and reach a wide-ranging audience compared to the past. Besides being the voice that social media advances, celebrities are the most sought after by companies for endorsement and brand ambassadors for their goods and services. Celebrities and, in particular, professional athletes are significant influencers on cultural and societal issues. Therefore, they have a social obligation to act as positive role models.
Athletes convey adorable attributes such as talent, confidence, teamwork, discipline, and hardworking. They are viewed as more exceptional than the ordinary human being with expectations to exhibit wisdom, citizenship, and morality. Media plays a conspicuous role in individualizing and showcasing celebrities and professional athletes (Coombs & Cassilo 1). There is a divided opinion and ongoing debate whether celebrities and professional athletes should act as role models in society. Google defines a role model as a person who is ideal to be an imitation by others. Therefore, a role model is a leader or mentor to be emulated through role imitation and emulation of all other aspects of their life outside the profession. Youths imitate and emulate athletes who are their heroes and conduct themselves in a manner that corresponds to the way of life of such celebrities. Fans and congregations more than ever are connected to athletes owing to advances in mass media. Production of sports specials such as "Lakers featuring LA Lakers" accords followers the opportunity to engage athletes off the court, access their daily routine, and personal journeys through their stories. Youths can relate to the struggles and difficulties that celebrities undergo to achieve their goals in life. Therefore, celebrities and professional athletes influence youth behavior, the moral development of youths, and consumer behaviors’.
Athletes have a potential influence on the moral character growth of maturing youths. Naturally, the environment plays a significant role in influencing individual moral behavior. Specific standards of conduct are introduced early in one's upbringing through simple observation, discerning the application of rules in particular settings by adults, and later being taught to exemplify the same rules and social norms. The two main elements of character growth are initiation and imitation. Imitation occurs after birth when the child behaves as expected by those around them, and initiation occurs later when the child observes and begins to copy a modeler. Athletes are viewed as role models due to their potential and stance to alter and alleviate the lives of the underprivileged in society (Bright 1). NBA superstar Lebron James opened a school for the underprivileged youths back in Akron, Ohio and supported St. Vincent-St. Mary, his alma mater. Adolescents' look for moral support from celebrities, athletes, parents, mentors, and teachers hence supporting the concept that it takes a society to raise a child.
Celebrities and professional athletes can advocate for appropriate behavior as role models for growing youths. The actions and values inspire others who tap into the same activities and energy to navigate life's journey. The actions of athletes on and off the field and the ability to spread positive messages have had a positive impact during the Covid-19 pandemic. The use of social media to pass around risk mitigation strategies such as masking up, social distancing, washing of hands, and uptake of vaccines has helped keep others safe (Leng & Phua 2). At the initial stages of the pandemic, some athletes, such as Rudy Gobert, joked about Covid-19. Until he contracted the virus, he saw a change in the attitude of many athletes that even forced the shutting down of NBA games and other sports. Gobert later released an apology statement for his carelessness on his Instagram page and underlined the importance of adhering to Covid-19 precautions. Celebrities such as Mr. Brown took onto YouTube and composed "10 people 1 Metre" song to pass prevention messages that have helped alleviate the situation. The majority of youths, when they see the actions of their role models, the majority of adolescents follow suit like taking protective measures with Covid-19; hence athletes play a critical role in the moral character development of youths.
Athletes have a significant effect on teenage behavior and attitude. For better or worse, athletes can potentially influence how youths view themselves and see the world. With the proliferation of mass media, youths are magnetized to celebrities and athletes, leading to celebrity worship (Utami 139). According to a body image investigation, "Ideal to Real," 80% of adolescent girls compare their images to those of celebrities. Further, it came out that among those teens, half of them were dissatisfied with their looks with the photos of celebrities. The idolization of celebrities can lead to negative body image characterized by low self-esteem, social anxiety, and depression. In emulating athletes, youths are pushed to abuse performance-enhancing drugs to attain the appearance and behavior of star athletes. Therefore, the behaviors’ of athletes primarily impact the behavior of children who look up to them.
Celebrity endorsement is one of the marketing communication strategies companies utilize to promote and sell their products, brands, and services. Celebrity endorsements can potentially influence consumer behavior and attitudes, purchasing power, and brand identification and awareness. Also, consumers are always willing to pay the upmarket price for their celebrities' endorsed products (Calvo-Portal et al. 2). The increase and ease of access to stars through social media have seen recommendations by celebrities on certain products influence consumer behaviors. Celebrities' endorsement is a booming multi-million industry aimed at increasing companies' sales and market shares by influencing consumers' purchasing habits. The use of stars in the brand endorsement is to stir emotional and attitudinal reactions of a consumer while at the same time keeping in mind consumer expectations and brand recognition (Nyarko et al. 87). The 1984 "Nike Air Jordan Campaign" saw the dominance by Nike Jordan of 75% of shoe sales for basketball and 10.8% increase in sales in the US, according to Social Media Week. Companies model customer behaviors by tailoring their needs and transferring endorsers' meaning to the brand. Therefore, celebrity endorsements have a potential infl

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