A can still remember the controversial advertisement featuring Charles Barkley and his endorsement of Nike. The still infamous statement of “I am not a role model” invokes debate about the true meaning of a what a role model is and is not. I can assure you that being a Dad of four myself, I am charged with the idea that I am a role model. I discussed this idea or at least touch upon it in my last post when I asked, “Are You Connecting With Your Child?” Being a role model to me is also connecting on a subliminal plane with your child. The things you do as a Dad, the child may ultimately do when that child becomes an adult and a parent. Dictionary.com gives the definition to mean:
“a person whose behavior, example, or success is or can be emulated by others, especially by younger people.”
I do note the positive spin this definition gives but I would also add that it can also be your failure that is emulated by others. We try our best as Dads to show our children the path of righteousness or how to be the best possible person you can be. To me that would be the true measure of success. We see many celebrities that have the attention of our kids today, be it Justin Beiber, Miley Cyrus, Rhianna, or Kirk Cameron.
You may be asking yourself, “Okay, now hold on just a minute Jim, Kirk Cameron? Seriously?” Perhaps he is not the same type of celebrity as the likes of “Bieber Fever!”, but nonetheless, he is a celebrity that others could look up to as an example or someone you might want your kids to emulate. I have done a number of blog posts about “Genuine Celebrity Dads” on my own blog and Dads that I think are those that we should look to as doing their best as celebrities and as Fathers. In my opinion, Kirk Cameron is one of those Dads.
Kirk Cameron recently found himself in a mess with the gay and lesbian groups and the mainstream media has tried to give it legs by stirring the pot more and highlighting the statements made in a context that may be more of a way to inflame than to truly take what he has said and what he was responding to and put it into context. I won’t go into more detail here but suffice it to say that Cameron has taken a stance on something that has labeled him by others as a “hater”. Cameron a Father of six children with his wife Chelsea is doing what he must, be a role model for those children. His stance may not be the most popular or it may even be considered not politically correct in a world today where we must set aside beliefs or be persecuted for standing for those beliefs.
I have read the transcripts, I have seen the video and have heard lots of discussion and commentary on the CNN interview by Piers Morgan. I think that what Cameron said was in line with his belief and what he knows to be God’s law. Is it popular? Ask an atheist or ask a homosexual or anyone that stands on the other side of the fence and you will get a completely different response than mine or others on the opposite side. Do I hate homosexuals? No. Did he say that he hates homosexuals? No. This is what comes out of the statements that he made and they get shaped and turned until he is persecuted for his “beliefs”.
My children look at me at times to see what my beliefs are and what I stand for in certain situations. I have been seen as a bad guy for some of the more unpopular beliefs and I have been on the opposite side of what a true role model should be for things that I have done in my past. I try to explain those lapses and use those as lessons, that Dad is not always right and what I have done in some cases are not the model way of handling situations. I teach my kids not to judge others and that their behavior, although not in line with our way of thinking or in line with what we should do from a faith point of view, should not be condemned. It is not up to us to judge the action of others. Being a role model is sticking to what is right, be it right or wrong in the eyes of others. Keeping in line with how you act is extremely important to remain consistent. Are your thoughts the same? Is Kirk Cameron being a role model to his kids? Whether you stand beside him in his statements or not, do you think he is teaching his kids? I say yes.