Moral & Ethical Dilemmas/ Character Development
Remembering 11 Forgotten Heroes
through Adults in their nineties
Average Audience Size:
1) Acoustically sound room or
seating in movable chairs or seated around tables of 8-12 or on floor.
2) Setup should be appropriate for
ages of participants and goals of the group.
3) Speaker does not use microphone
for monologue but one is needed for audience participation for remainder
4) Laptop, video projector and
screen are needed in order to show video clip. Wi-Fi or internet
preferable but can show clip from digital file.
Part #1 – Monologue of the
story “They’re All Gone”
Approx 22 minutes
The promise made by an eight
year old and the journey he took to keep it
Audience moves into breakout
Approx 3 minutes
Part #2 – Breakout Session #1
Approx 15 minutes
Moral & Ethical Dilemmas
through the Prism of Sport
Generally time permits us to
implement three topics in this section.
The following are examples of dilemmas we have used to trigger conversation:
Adults and Corporate Settings:
a) “Stolen Knowledge” - Intellectual Property, Proprietary Knowledge and Time
b) Disparaging a Competitor’s Product
c) Eligibility for Public Assistance
d) Profit Regulation
e) Labor Productivity
f) Market Speculation
g) Control of Price and Product
h) Competition in Business
i) Environmental Issues
j) Living Beyond Our Means
Students and Young Adults:
Common Topics (public forums)
e) Role Model
f) Injury and Risk to Health
g) Are College Sports the Right Message
h) Is Winning the Message
i) Your Coach
Common Topics (faith based
In Addition to the above listed
a) Balance vs. Purpose
b) The Sabbath
Order of discussion:
Upon completion of part #1 the monologue it should take 2-3
minutes to separate the audience into 6-8 smaller groups of 10-15 each in order
to best encourage group participation. The desired dynamic will create enough voices
so conflict can arise but not too many voices where noise will overwhelm
Prior to the start of the program I will have worked with the
group organizers to ascertain the goals or core values of the audience members
and then adjust the dilemmas to make the best and most appropriate fit for the audience. Ideally the break out
groups are predetermined if not I will have communicated with the group
organizers the best options.
Each dilemma has a front story and a back story. For
example a common topic is Sportsmanship: I stand in front of the audience
and will say the following “The definition of a dilemma means there is no right
answer. Duing this portion I will present several dilemmas for group discussion which will then be shared with everyone.
Example: The 1st dilemma being on Sportsmanship. (The front story) - Imagine you are a world class
tennis player and are competing in one of the top tennis championships in the
world. You are in the final and the match is in the final set and is tied
up in the final games. Your opponent hits a shot and it is called out.
You win the game and will serve for the match and championship. The ball
that was just called out you actually saw hit the line. What do you do?”
I allow for 2-4 minutes of discussion depending on how engaged
the participants are in their groups. I keep a sharp eye on body language and
any feedback by the organizers that are participating in the break out groups.
I then call for one volunteer from each group to come forward and share what
the overwhelming opinions were from their respective break out groups.
Comments should be limited to approx 20-30 seconds each. When the last
volunteer has spoken I share (the back story) the real life scenario in this
instance happened in the 1982 French Open semi-Finals where Mats Vilander
overruled a call giving him match point and insisted on replaying the point. I
ask the audience to raise their hands if they are eighteen years old. I
ask the audience if they at 18 would have the character in that situation with
fame, money and prestige on the line to overrule a call that gave you the
That completes dilemma number one and I continue with numbers
two and three in the same format.
Note: I adjust the dilemmas to meet the audience.
Audiences at public high schools are different than faith based adult
audiences. Student audiences differ than adult ones and so on. The goal
is to create the relevant conversations, to stimulate, not to deliver the right
Expose not impose.
Part #3 – Breakout Session #2
Approx 12 minutes
In the same format as session
#1 I ask another three questions:
What is a hero?
Who is a hero?
Who is your hero?
Time permitting I will take a full complement of group answers,
if we are limited by time I will open the floor to 6-9 total from any group
that will share the answers to each question.
We all need role models. Acknowledging and even publically
honoring those who inspire us is a valuable educational tool and a healthy
function in our role as productive members of society.
Part #4 – Video from HBO Sport
in America: Our Defining Heroes
Approx 3 minutes
Part #5 – Summation
Approx 5 minutes
I thank the audience for their participation and open the floor
for any questions or comments. I then share the challenges of the program
and the journey. I encourage everyone to watch the HBO documentary; it is
a truly beautiful and inspiring film.
I finish by telling the audience that I have shared who my
heroes are and if they could please help me by honoring eleven of them as I
raise eleven placards aloft one by one, each with a name of the men who was
killed in at the Munich Games. The audience joins me as each name is
recited out loud. Something spoken is not forgotten. I always end
with David Berger, I ask the audience if anyone knows where he was from “Cleveland” is the answer, born and raised in the USA.