An Ethical Dilemma

4 Dec

In February of 2013, Pete Mundo was an Oklahoma radio personality who did the play-by-play for one particular high school basketball team. A snowstorm was brewing prior to a weekend tournament, so everyone involved – coaches, teams, media – went in advance of the snowstorm. After a safe arrival, the tournament got cancelled – but the snow had already set and continued to fall. Two hours away from home and paying multiple people to essentially babysit a bunch of high schoolers, school officials decided to save some money and send everyone home that night. It was, “NOT SAFE” on the trek home, but everybody safely made the return trip.

Mundo took to Twitter to rip the superintendent and athletic director for poor leadership and decision-making. At 3 a.m. Mundo got a phone call from the athletic director demanding him to retract his statements. On one hand, he was the school’s play-by-play announcer, but on the other, he shouldn’t be expected to give preferential treatment. School officials were lying about the facts and particulars of the trip to parents, telling them it was OK to return, that the, “roads weren’t that bad.” After meeting with the superintendent in person, Mundo stood by his original comments. He did regret the way he went about it – blasting his feelings on Twitter – but regardless, he was happy with his statement. Three weeks later Mundo left Oklahoma for a job in New York City.

I think what Mundo did was very bold, but very necessary. What would’ve happened if the bus wrecked? If some student were to get injured?All sorts of lawsuits could’ve been started. With Mundo’s outburst, it gave listeners at home an opportunity to know what’s really going on instead of hearing things from the people who need things to go their way (the administration). Nothing bad would’ve leaked from the administration unless what happened was terrible. A flat tire on the bus in the middle of a bad storm? Nobody at home hears about that until the kids return home safely; that’s too late. With Mundo, the independence of his job helped parents understand their kids might be in a bit of danger, or at least what they’re up to.

Pete Mundo is a Sports/Newscaster for CBS Sports radio, WFAN660, Fox News Radio and SINow. He also runs the independently owned Heartland College Sports, a Big 12 Conference site dedicated to football and basketball.

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