that everyone has their own definition of what makes a person “good,” and those definitions can’t help but be completely arbitrary, subjective, and ultimately unreliable. I also realize how presumptuous it can be for a person to make a value judgment on the “goodness” of a person they’ve never met. With that being said, nothing about Michael Jordan --- his legendary cruelty and ability to hold petty grudges, his mean streak, his addiction to gambling, his infidelity, his Hitler mustache --- suggests that he’d fit any definition of the word “good.”
Now, I don’t know if any of this actually matters. Michael Jordan is one of the most famous and most successful human beings who’ve ever lived. He also became famous by being better than everyone else at a skill that doesn’t have any inherent “badness” to it. He was great at basketball, not beheading people. I suppose that, for many people, being successful at a skill that people appreciate matters much more than being a good person.
But while this may be (and probably is) true, it’s also true that roughly 99.9999% of the population won’t be blessed with the type of genes that would enable someone to grow to 6’6’ and be able to dunk from the foul line. Instead of being like Mike, I think we’d all be better served to just be “good” people instead.
Damon Young is the co-founder of the award-winning site Very Smart Brothas and co-author of Your Degrees Won't Keep You Warm At Night: The Very Smart Brothas Guide To Dating, Mating, and Fighting Crime." Follow him on Twitter: @verysmartbros