Kelloggs dumps Michael Phelps

Michael Phelps on a Kelloggs cereal boxOlympic Gold medalist Michael Phelps is having a really bad week. Thanks to a photo of him smoking marijuana that was published Sunday, he’s been suspended from competition, according to a statement released yesterday that reads: “USA Swimming has reprimanded Michael Phelps under its Code of Conduct by withdrawing financial support and the eligibility to compete for a period of three months effective today, Feb. 5, 2009. This is not a situation where any anti-doping rule was violated, but we decided to send a strong message to Michael because he disappointed so many people, particularly the hundreds of thousands of USA Swimming member kids who look up to him as a role model and a hero. Phelps has voluntarily accepted this reprimand and ‘has committed to earn back our trust.'” Not only that, but cereal manufacturer Kelloggs decided not to renew their contract with the swimmer. They also released a statement yesterday, that read: “We originally built the relationship with Michael, as well as the other Olympic athletes, to support our association with the U.S. Olympic team. Michael’s most recent behavior is not consistent with the image of Kellogg. His contract expires at the end of February and we have made a decision not to extend his contract.” Phelps grossed $100 million in endorsement deals after winning eight gold medals at the Beijing Olympics.

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Comments & Discussion

  1. Beltane • February 6, 2009 @ 11:14 AM

    I appreciate Kellogg’s stepping up and protecting their integrity. Bad behaviour too often gets rewarded or ignored due to celebrity status and that is just not right.

  2. My own opinion • February 6, 2009 @ 11:19 AM

    I tend to agree with Beltane. In this particular situation, I don’t feel sorry for him at all. I can’t believe he has grossed $100 million in sponsorship deals — any sanctions or loss of sponsorship will not be taking away his livelihood.

  3. Nancy • February 6, 2009 @ 11:25 AM

    I agree Beltane! Even though some people have already commented on the other article about Phelps on here saying that “it’s only weed, not heroine” and stuff like that, kids need to be sent this message that drugs are drugs and we, as a society, don’t reward people for getting hooked on dope! Drugs are drugs and, although some are heavier than others, it still doesn’t make it right to take and get away with taking the lighter drugs.

  4. Anonymous • February 6, 2009 @ 11:57 AM

    Why do people still presume that athletes should be role models for their children? Parents should be role models as children are their resposibility. While I comprehend the loss of an endorsement contract due to unacceptable behaviour, I do not understand why people put so much pressure on someone to be perfect just because he can swim fast. Besides, we are talking about a country where presidents have indulged in drugs and other frowned upon activities. If you can forgive and still respect your leader then why not an athlete who still has a long journey to adulthood?

  5. updown • February 6, 2009 @ 12:23 PM

    Obama smokes cigarettes and hes apparently a role model for a lot of people. Wouldnt you consider cigarettes to be a drug too? which infact is worse than marijuana and addictive too. Except that it has never been made into a big deal even by McCain during the election campaign.
    So, I guess its not about how bad it is for you. Its just about whether society thinks whether it should be legal or not. Funny how alcohol and cigarettes which are addictive and bad for your health are not illegal while marijuana which is not addictive and is also used medicially is outlawed.

  6. My own opinion • February 6, 2009 @ 12:26 PM

    That is an interesting question, Anonymous. Why should athletes be role models? I will take it further. Why care about this guy at all? Why waste money on the Olympics and other huge sporting events? Why spend taxpayers dollars on training and supporting these athletes, so that they can then become multi-millionaires for selling their endorsement? Why do we, as a society, continue to recognize and reward people to such a great extent when their true contribution to the betterment of society is marginal? So he can swim — so what? When he fosters peace in the world, makes a significant medical advancement, reduces the suffering of people, then we can celebrate.

    If he doesn’t want to be held to a higher standard, then get out of the limelight. He did what he supposedly wanted to do — swim and win medals. Now go somewhere and live your life in private: don’t bring attention to yourself by making obscene amounts of money in endorsement deals. Then we will leave you alone.

  7. Joshua • February 6, 2009 @ 2:26 PM

    Man, first the snowboarder now this guy. The world is gonna think were all a bunch of potheads. Wait aren’t they both from BC?..lol

  8. Joshua • February 6, 2009 @ 2:31 PM

    Lol..forget my comment, next time im gonna know what i’m talking about before i post, sorry guys, lol.

  9. tributegirl • February 6, 2009 @ 2:51 PM

    updown, I don’t really see how cigarettes are worse than weed, they are both addictive and bad for your health, but weed fogs your brain, so your reaction time while driving (and other activities) is slower than normal.

  10. whatever • February 6, 2009 @ 5:49 PM

    I dump Kelloggs. I ain’t perfect so I ain’t taking perfect cereal.

  11. Bravo • February 6, 2009 @ 7:44 PM

    Kelloggs does not want to send a message out to parents and kids that they support drugs. Oh I want to be like phelps, i’m gonna eat kellogg’s and then smoke weed hahahaha let it be a lesson, if you want celebrity status, you gotta stay clean or gtfo.

  12. cindy • February 6, 2009 @ 10:20 PM

    Anonymous, I agree with you. David, I also agree with you. Michael Phelps continue your life with or without the situation. Have a long way to go in life. Learn and move on.

  13. Coop • February 6, 2009 @ 10:53 PM

    Right on David, seems tributegirl is often misinformed in her responses.

  14. sexy single dude • February 6, 2009 @ 11:15 PM

    I smoke weed. And I agree with Monique though.They need to mind their business.Im gunna go find Mr. Phelps and light one up with him only problem is that I live in Ontario…darn!!!

  15. What_do_I_know • February 6, 2009 @ 11:27 PM

    Is everyone forgetting that picture was talking long before he won these medals. How do we know he has not be clean? I would hope he is clean or at least careful so as to not risk is $ 100 Million. For all we know Tiger Woods could be smoking weed and he is just smart enough to not get caught.

  16. Kaiya • February 6, 2009 @ 11:28 PM

    I thought the picture was taken recently.

  17. winner • February 6, 2009 @ 11:37 PM

    Winners don’t use drugs

  18. valr • February 7, 2009 @ 2:59 AM

    Marijuana is psychogocially addictive. And like any other situation where people use mind-altering substances to deal with their lives, there comes a point where they need more and more to get the same high.
    Celebrities are role models whether they like it or not. And when they are self-centered, doing stupid and potentially dangerous things, they should be out of the limelight for a lot longer than 3 months.

  19. demigod • February 7, 2009 @ 3:46 AM

    Oh, NOW he’s a celebrity? Since when are celebrities suppose to be role models? And for what exactly?
    Nancy..alcohol is a drug. Would it be ok if Phelps had a few drinks?

  20. David • February 7, 2009 @ 11:43 AM

    That is misleading, Vair. You are mistaking physiological tolerance to psychological dependance. While tolerance will increase with any substance taken, as is normal with any organism’s ability to adapt to it’s environment, psychological addiction occurs through the mind’s habituation to a given situation. One can make the same observation about food, gambling and sex.

    Cannabis is not dangerous, but should be used in moderation with the same precautions as any substance.

    I wish people would be more informed before making opinions on something they know little about. It makes it easier for politicians like Anslinger to push their social control/economic agendas. What you then have, like today, is a runaway effect as a result of those laws. People stop remembering why criminalization was put into effect in the first place, and start buying into silly political moral agendas.

    With the current economic recession, this multi-billion dollar black-market industry is exactly what the government should be looking at decriminalizing and regulating. They’re wasting money fighting a losing moral, political and legal battle, and punishing kids like Michael Phelps for what? Smoking a dried plant that has medicinal qualities?

  21. Danielle • February 7, 2009 @ 12:36 PM

    I think paying someone 100 million dollars for anything is an obscenity. Why not give a million dollars to a hundred schools in poor districts and see the impact that has. Imagnine multiplying this by the number of contracts for professional athletes.

    Imagine what that could accomplish.

    If only…

  22. parenting • February 7, 2009 @ 12:42 PM

    Scary how some of you would be parents thinks it is ok to smoke pot. I can only imagine now you and your kids having a pot smoking session before and after a meal and watching Hockey Night in Canada. Drugs are for losers, you know that. Stop trying to make it sound like it’s ok or normal to smoke pot. Pot head losers.

  23. Nancy • February 7, 2009 @ 5:32 PM

    Well demigod, he has been considered a “role-model” to up and coming young swimmers who hope that someday they can be like him, probably ever since he accepted these millions of dollars for these endorsements! If he didn’t want that responsibility, he should not have accepted perhaps. As for having a few drinks, well for the meantime THAT is not illegal…when done on his own time. Of course if he were to consume too much alcohol and make a fool of himself, then too, his behaviour would not be “consistent with the image of Kellogg”. Face it people, this is not a debate about whether or not marijuana should be legalized or whether or not it is “addictive” (and for the record, I lived with an addict..and marijuana IS psychologically addictive! I’m the one who had to put up with him when he didn’t have any!!). The fact of the matter is that for the present time, it IS illegal and it impairs your brain and it’s not right to let anyone, especially young impressionable children, think that it is “okay” to be taking “illegal substances” of ANY kind.

  24. David • February 7, 2009 @ 6:18 PM

    Sorry, Nancy, but you’re being very naive and misinformed. If you want to overprotect your children, that’s fine. However, I’d prefer if mine live in the real world where they can make their own decisions based on scientific fact, rather than political hearsay and propaganda.

  25. .. • February 7, 2009 @ 6:33 PM

    David, you’re an idiot in denial. Enjoy your brain-fried kids.

  26. Nancy • February 7, 2009 @ 7:01 PM

    Oh, and how am I being “misinformed”, David? Because I know from EXPERIENCE that marijuana IS psychologically addictive? If you think that ANY scientist can prove otherwise to me after the experience I’ve been through, then YOU are the one who is “misinformed”!!

  27. cindy • February 7, 2009 @ 7:05 PM

    David, your very good with your information. As for Michael Phelps, congradulations on your medals, thats the MOST IMPORTANT thing. People around the world, stop overthinking things. Parenting, there are pros and cons of drugs, but remember its all about CONTROLING yourself. You don’t need athletes, movie stars, or any famous person to be role models, its what you personally do in life should inspire you. As long as you live a healthy and successful life, nothing else matters. The media should really stop talking so much about Michael’s personal business, then again, thats how they make money.

  28. .. • February 7, 2009 @ 7:35 PM

    cindy, you must work in the “rose colored glasses” industry.

  29. Alan • February 7, 2009 @ 8:29 PM

    If Kelloggs paid him to be an icon on their cereal boxes, to represent a winner, and he’s off at a party toking where he’s so out of it that he doesn’t realize someone’s taking a picture of him, they have every right to say, Wait a minute, we don’t want you representing us after all, we didn’t know you were a stoner. Good for them. And I hope whoever took the pic got a lot of money for it.

  30. grow ops • February 7, 2009 @ 8:32 PM

    smoking pot only supports the organize gangs and criminals who grow this stuff, too many wanna be gangsters with guns sell this stuff to the mature “successful” people, it’s big business and i’m sure most cops, lawyers, teachers, athletes, government officials have smoked pot…even you reading this, it’s like porn some people like to do this in their own privacy, i’m sure it’s no worst than eating mcdonalds or driving after having a frew drinks.

  31. Nancy • February 8, 2009 @ 1:07 AM

    Wrong David! People DO care! We don’t want to live with a bunch of brain dead pot heads! As for your comment to ‘..’, what makes ‘..’ any different from ‘David’ or ‘Nancy’? Maybe I’m not really Nancy and maybe you’re not really David…just by putting a “name” in the box above doesn’t mean anything, does it? Now there’s some food for thought for all the potheads!!

  32. Cindy Seto • February 8, 2009 @ 1:22 AM

    Thank you David, well said. Very intelligent speech you have there. People, you need to research your information more clearly. To “..”, no I don’t work in the rose colored glasses industry. I am student, currently doing my masters in science in Alberta, Canada. Understand your information before speaking up.

  33. Guardian • February 8, 2009 @ 3:18 AM

    This is the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever read. Marijuana is NOT addictive and anyone who says otherwise is obviously has never tried it. The majority of Canadians have or continue to smoke pot and it’s pretty much considered legal. It’s been around since the dawn of time and should never be taken away. Cigarettes and booze have killed millions while Marijuana fails to have any recorded death related incidents. If you’re an uptight prick you’ll preach against it. If you understand the truth behind it and choose not to use it, that’s just fine, and if you smoke up… Well, it’s part of our heritage.

  34. David • February 8, 2009 @ 4:06 AM

    The difference, Nancy, is that I’m basing my opinion on scientific studies comprising of years of research in the area. I also lived in residence at university for two years, and saw how ubiquitous cannabis was. I can assure you that no one was even close to being brain-dead. Quite the opposite, actually, as I met some of the brightest young minds I’ve ever had the privilege of spending time with.

    You, however, basing your opinion on some source of misinformation that stands at odds with the vast majority of the scientific community. That’s what makes us different. Please, just stop, Nancy. You’re lumping cannabis into the same category as heroin and cocaine. And that’s just ignorant. Do yourself a favour and research the issue. If you want to understand the political and economic reasons behind the criminalization, rent the documentary Grass. Something tells me you won’t, but that’s your loss. Afterall, you’re the one a trying to argue a stance that contradicts modern medical science.

    Like I said, Phelps is only in heat because he’s a celebrity. Most people don’t care, and rightfully so. Unfortunately, a minority thinks if they make enough noise and spread enough misinformation, they can succeed in pushing their misguided moral agenda on the rest of us.

  35. demigod • February 8, 2009 @ 4:28 AM

    ALL drugs are psychologically addictive. Including cigarettes and alcohol-being more addictive and hazardous to one’s health than pot)
    Kelloggs didn’t sign Phelps to be a role model for swimmers, Nancy. They want to use his name/image to sell a product. Enough with this ‘behaviour not consistent with the image of Kelloggs..protecting their integrity’ crap. Please. They only care about the bottom line.

  36. tributegirl • February 8, 2009 @ 10:21 AM

    My apologies, David, I didn’t realize you were God. It must be really cool to know everything for an absolute fact! Next time I have grieving parents in my department, who have just learned that their child is dead/injured because of their unusually slow reaction time and reduced judgement while driving, I’ll be sure to tell them that the pot their child smoked just before their accident had absolutely nothing to do with it, because David (aka God)from tribute.ca says so! That should make them feel better!
    I’ll bet you are one of those people who also denies global warming, insisting that there is no scientific evidence to prove it.

  37. David • February 8, 2009 @ 12:06 PM

    That’s a red herring argument, tributegirl. Instead of accusing me of saying things I didn’t, why don’t you refute what I’m saying with scientific evidence to back it up? If you drive impaired, the substance isn’t what killed you. Your own poor judgement is what killed you. Alcohol doesn’t suddenly cause people to have the urge to drive. Neither does cannabis. Don’t DUI. Period. Stop blaming the substance for bad decisions. Because if you are, then you must, in theory, be against alcohol as well.

    And your last sentence doesn’t even make sense. I just finished saying that we should rely on what the empirical scientific science behind cannabis tells us. And make a decision based on that. You and Nancy are the ones telling us to ignore what science is telling us and go in a different direction.

  38. Nancy • February 8, 2009 @ 2:32 PM

    I’m not “telling” you or anyone else “to ignore” what science is telling you and go in a different direction…I’m ‘stating’ my opinion from MY experience and not “telling” anyone else WHAT to believe or not believe, they can form their own opinions…YOU ARE THE ONE TRYING TO CONVINCE ME/US AND CALLING ME “NAIVE AND MISINFORMED”! Just state YOUR OPINION and then move along because you will not change my opinion or my experiences. In my opinion, the best way to learn is from EXPERIENCE! Oh, and what you said above to Tributegirl makes absolutely NO SENSE! “if you drive impaired the substance isn’t what killed you”…DUH! It ‘IMPAIRED’ your ability to think as you normally would when you’re NOT impaired! It is not WHAT killed you BUT it IS the cause of your death! Even for medicinal purposes you are not supposed to drive or do anything that requires “alertness”. So the rest of us here in the “real world” not in “marijuana la-la land” have to deal with all these stoners whose brains are constantly impaired and their judgement is sh!t!! Nice! Just the kind of world I want my kids to live in! Anyways David, you go by “science” and I’ll go by “experience” and lets call it a day, shall we?

  39. tributegirl • February 8, 2009 @ 2:37 PM

    Not at all, in fact science does tell us a lot, we can gain much knowledge from studying what has already been learned, however there is also much knowledge to be gained from experience and common sense. You seem to be saying that scientific studies are the ONLY things that count, and the only studies I’ve seen on this subject are not claiming to be actual facts, the studies are actually inconclusive.
    If you drive while impared, the imparment has affected your judgement, which (as you just said) is what kills people, so the imparment is the main contributing factor. I know what you are saying, don’t DUI, and I totally agree with that, but as I just said, the imparment directly affects judgement.
    I’m not interested in arguing with you, it is my belief, based on my education and experience, that cannabis IS addictive. Just like cigarettes and alcohol. You believe what you want, based on your own education and experience, and I’ll do the same.
    Now, given all that we’ve discussed and disagreed about, there is actually one thing that I do agree with you on. I believe that cannabis should be legalized and regulated. As you pointed out, it is a HUGE money-making industry, and weed is no worse, OR BETTER, than alcohol or cigarettes, so if they are legal, I believe weed should be too, and it should also be strongly regulated.
    I will continue to educate my children on all these things, and will make sure they are aware of all the pros, and cons, of each.

  40. tributegirl • February 8, 2009 @ 2:38 PM

    Sorry, Nancy, my comment above was directed to David, yours wasn’t there when I started typing!

  41. David • February 8, 2009 @ 3:59 PM

    Fine with me. In the end, though, Nancy, if you make a comment that goes against medical science, you’re going to get called on it. That’s like saying guns kill people, so let’s get rid of them altogether. Do you not see the ridiculousness of such a statement? It sounds as though you’re arguing more for your pride, at this point, than facts.

    It’s not, in itself, addictive. You can talk about your experiences all you want, but in the end, you are simply misinformed. And too stubborn to admit it. That’s just not how the pharmacology of THC works. Please do a little bit of research, if not for me, then for your children’s sake. They don’t deserve to be socialized into ignorance.

    If you don’t like it. Don’t do it. It’s as simple as that. Just stop telling us what we’re allowed or not allowed to do with our bodies, and stop deliberately feeding us misinformation so you can push your moral agenda.

    Tributegirl, I’m glad we’re on the same page when it comes to the legalization and taxation of this multibillion dollar industry. It’s about choice, and whether the government has the right to take these choices away from their citizens. I think people forget this was the biggest issues that arose in the 60’s counter-culture.

  42. updown • February 8, 2009 @ 4:35 PM

    For anyone who mentioned that marijuana “fogs your brain” or “impairs your driving”, you do realize that alcohol, which is legal for god knows what reason, does the exact same thing. The only difference is that alcohol can kill your liver, while its not possible to overdose on marijuana (which also is scientifically proven). Also, who has heard of alcohol being used “medicinally”? At the most you can use it to disinfect a wound! which says a lot for how much it corodes your insides.
    I would rather my kids smoked marijuana than drank alcohol.

  43. updown • February 8, 2009 @ 4:41 PM

    as for the impairment argument up there, you could be impaired on tylenol 3. fact is you just should not drive impaired. period! doesnt mean the substance that causes the impairment should be outlawed. it just means that people who use them need to smarten up.

  44. tributegirl • February 8, 2009 @ 5:18 PM

    updown, that’s pretty much what I was saying. People should not drive while impared by ANYthing, including weed.
    Btw, alcohol thins the blood, which for some people can actually be a livesaver if their condition has not been diagnosed yet. After diagnosis, they are usually prescribed a blood thinner, such as warfarin.

  45. demigod • February 8, 2009 @ 7:02 PM

    Nancy, are you ok with living in the ‘real world’ of drunks? Or are you ok with it because the ‘government’ hasn’t banned alcohol?
    The world doesn’t revolve around your kids, or anyone else’s. Drugs are for adults, and if adults want to exercise that right they should be allowed to, and not ban it because it might give kids the wrong msg. They are their PARENTS responsibility.
    There is no ‘It takes a village..’

  46. Nancy • February 8, 2009 @ 8:04 PM

    Well, I’m just going by the article…which is talking about ‘marijuana’…it doesn’t say anything about alcohol. So, I never gave my opinion on that, really. First of all, I understand that children are their parents responsibility, but I also believe that society as a whole should do everything they can to protect ALL children, not just their own. You see a kid fall off his bike and hit his head, you shouldn’t just walk past and say “Oh well, it’s your parents problem kid, not mine!” Now, I think that the government should regulate the use of alchol…heck, for all I care they CAN ban it but, it still won’t stop people from using it just as people don’t stop toking illegal marijuana. I can’t stand being around someone who is ‘drunk’ (or high) and I definately DO NOT agree with DUI…I don’t even agree with .08, it should be .00 and anyone caught DUI for ANY reason and under the influence of ANYTHING should lose their license AND their vehicle (or whomever’s vehicle it is) FOREVER…no second, third, fourth chances!!

  47. updown • February 8, 2009 @ 10:11 PM

    the problem lies in how the government sees it. coz if they make alcohol illegal, its gonna hit the economy hard…and thats what they are concerned about more than anything.
    if they make alcohol illegal, they see tons of job losses ahead, companies going under, not to mention the emergence of another black market.
    they know that people wont stop drinking if its outlawed. for a lot of people breaking this law will be as easy as jaywalking.

  48. demigod • February 9, 2009 @ 1:11 AM

    The government NEEDS the legalization of alcohol and tobacco. Without them they would lose billions of $$$ in tax revenues to keep the economy and industries going. And the public NEEDS the fix. So that’s what the gov’t decided to give us.
    Smokers and drinkers are the highest tax payers, as two-thirds of the cost of cigarettes and booze is taxes. Which can be justified, as they are also the biggest burden on our healthcare system.
    Now, if the gov’t can only get past the BS moral issue of pot and prostitution (two other billion $$$ industries) and legalize those, all our economic/money problems would be solved. But that’s another article..

  49. tributegirl • February 9, 2009 @ 4:28 PM

    Ok, I’m not looking for an argument here, but while reading my newspaper today there was a very small article that reads:
    “Marijuana use may increase the risk of developing testicular cancer, in particular a more aggressive form of the disease, accordin to a U.S. study. Current users were 70 per cent more likely to develop it than non-users, with 10-year-plus users, frequent users or men who started smoking before age 18 at the highest risk.”
    I thought that was very interesting, and the timing coincided with this article quite well. As I said, not trying to start anything, just saw that and thought people might be interested.

  50. tributegirl • February 9, 2009 @ 4:37 PM

    demigod, agreed, pot and prostitution are not things that I indulge in, but if they were legalized, our country could be pulled out of debt fast. Also, if they were legalized, they could be regulated, (i.e. having a minimum age limit, legal protection, etc). These two things have existed for ages, and always will, our country may as well make some money off it! I also believe assisted suicide should be legal as well, and regulated. A friend of mine who was suffering and inevitably dying had to go to Switzerland as she wanted to die on her own terms. Her husband was investigated because he accompanied her and was with her when she took her own life.

  51. Nancy • February 9, 2009 @ 5:14 PM

    If we had people in our government who actually knew what they were doing, we wouldn’t be in debt to start with! LOL.:P I totally agree with the Dr. assisted suicide for those who have a painful, incurable disease. I believe that if you can sign a DNR form (do not resuscitate), you should be allowed to sign a form for assisted suicide.

  52. demigod • February 9, 2009 @ 5:33 PM

    TG..yes, that’s a given, those things would need regulating.
    Btw, excuse me for not putting a lot of stock in ‘US studies’. I don’t believe US officials are doing ANY kind of studies on marijuana use. Why? Because it’s illegal! lol
    I’d rather look to the medical communities’ findings (not regulated/funded by the gov’t). An unbiased scientific/clinical body with no agenda.
    I’ve read many studies that would contradict that report TG..

  53. tributegirl • February 9, 2009 @ 7:05 PM

    No prob, as I said, I wasn’t looking for an argument or anything, just sharing what I read. It didn’t say it was done by a U.S. “official”, it actually doesn’t say WHO is doing it, just a “U.S. study”, so it could be anyone, a university, a drug company, a nursing home (kidding!).

  54. demigod • February 9, 2009 @ 7:37 PM

    TG, didn’t mean to sound argumentative. ‘US study’ just sounds gov’t backed lol. But you’re right, we don’t know the source.

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