Thursday, November 12, 2009


Tonya Harding, born in Portland, Oregon on November 12, 1970, has lived a life which runs the gamut from fame to notoriety. She has stood on the heights and descended to the depths of human experience. Yet she soldiers on. As recently as this August past, she set a land speed record for the vehicle class at Bonneville Salt Flats, Utah.

In 1991, Miss Harding won the United States Figure Skating Championship, and was second in the World. In 1994, her world came crashing down around her silver skates.

My father was not an avid figure skating fan, but he was in his later years a bit of a news junkie. When a story caught his attention he pursued it relentlessly. In the case of Tonya, he followed each detailed story about the charges, the plea and the outcome of the case.

In the end, Dad was convinced, and was vocal about it, that he had witnessed the case of an innocent young girl who was caught up in circumstances beyond her control, the victim of being associated with the wrong people.

Unfortunately, Dad did not live to see Tonya's boxing career, or her numerous encounters with the law in incidents relating to alcohol consumption. Nor did he hear of the "hubcap incident." He was spared this, although I am convinced that he would have found that "extenuating circumstances" had plagued the young lady even into her fourth decade of life.

While I cannot condone many of her choices, I admit to an admiration for her athletic prowess, and for her courage in "pressing on" in spite of the negatives and the spotlight on her behaviors.


Lin said...

Whatever or whoever Tonya is at the moment, she is one strong dame who will not die. She has been in the news a LOT in her lifetime, hasn't she?? It seems she has a rough life, but you gotta give her credit for soldiering on. Does she make good choices?? Nah, but somehow she's doing some wild things in her life--something that most of us never try. Gotta give her points for always trying something new.

Andrea said...

One truth we can know: We rarely know all the circumstances surrounding incidences like this one.
Blessings and prayers, andrea

Secondary Roads said...

Tonya is quite the gal. I liked her best on World's Dumbest Criminals, especially when she would laugh.

vanilla said...

Lin, she does display courage.

Andrea, you are right. And perhaps this is why it is not wise to be too judgmental.

Chuck, I missed that show. Yes, she is "quite a gal."