Many years ago, O.J. Simpson was a huge icon is this country. He was a star football player in college and is, without a doubt, one of the greatest NFL players to have ever played the game. On top of that, he had this certain kind of charisma that made him such a huge celebrity. There have been many great athletes in the past, but very few had that charm that Simpson had. He was a hit on television and in commercials. You could say that O.J. was what they call a very marketable athlete. He might have been one of the biggest icons in the history of this country. I was too young to really remember him during those days, but I have heard plenty about his football and television career. Sadly, many people will not remember Simpson for those things. He will be remembered more for that police chase on national television in a white Bronco and his alleged killing of his wife and wife’s friend. You could say that his demise might be the biggest of any celebrity ever in this country.
Simpson was extremely lucky to get acquitted for those killings. I remember that trial some 22 years ago like it was yesterday. It was the trial of the century. Imagine if we had the level of social media that we have now? The trial seemed to last forever. Finally the day came when the verdict was reached. I think I joined with many over how shocked I was when he was found not guilty. O.J. was now a free man and maybe he could just ride off into the sunset and get his life back together. Or at least I thought. He was involved in an incident in Nevada a decade later and was back in prison. When I was watching his parole hearing last Thursday and seeing his reaction to the board’s decision to release his him this October, it struck me how far this guy has fallen. He was extremely joyful just to be free for crying out loud! He used to be some sort of celebrity God in this country. Now he is just some convict who got his wish. How the mighty have fallen!
If we can learn anything from Simpson’s life is this; the man had a serious anger problem. And he is not the first person who has this kind of problem. It affects many individuals and ruins their lives. Prison is filled with countless men and women who could not control their anger and it cost them dearly. Many have lost promising careers because they could not deal with their anger. Or they end up losing loved ones. The sad thing is many people simply deny the fact that they have anger issues that need to be dealt with. O.J. is a classic example. It is very obvious that his anger issues got the best of him. We will never know what happened with his wife. I can only speculate but it would be reasonable to assume that his anger got the best of him. That anger cost him greatly in so many ways. The hotel incident in Nevada is another example. Now Simpson is a free man but has he learned his lesson?
What is next for Simpson? I have no idea. I believe everyone deserves a second chance and perhaps he has changed his life around and gotten help with his anger issues. Maybe he can continue his search for his late wife’s killer. Chances are somebody like a Megan Kelly would want to interview him. I would greatly respect him if he came clean and talked as a warning to others about some of the demons that got the best of him and ruined his life.
It seems as though Simpson had two lives. The first one was the great, charming celebrity and football player that he was. The second one was some alleged killer and madman. Unfortunately for him, his legacy will forever be linked to the trial of the century rather than his exploits on the football field. It does not appear that will ever change. I cannot recall a greater demise ever of any famous celebrity in this country. He went from being a golden boy saint to an evil, dark person in just a few days back in 1994. He will always carry that evil label with him for the rest of his life.