Scrolling Headlines:

UMass women’s soccer falls to Central Connecticut 3-0 in home opener -

August 19, 2017

Preseason serves as opportunity for young UMass men’s soccer players -

August 13, 2017

Amherst Fire Department website adds user friendly components and live audio feed -

August 11, 2017

UMass takes the cake for best campus dining -

August 11, 2017

Two UMass students overcome obstacles to win full-ride scholarships -

August 2, 2017

The guilt of saying ‘guilty’ -

August 2, 2017

UMass tuition set to rise 3-4 percent for 2017-2018 school year -

July 18, 2017

PVTA potential cuts affect UMass and five college students -

July 10, 2017

New director of student broadcast media at UMass this fall -

July 10, 2017

Whose American Dream? -

June 24, 2017

Man who threatened to bomb Coolidge Hall taken into ICE custody -

June 24, 2017

Cale Makar drafted by Colorado Avalanche in first round of 2017 NHL Entry Draft -

June 24, 2017

Conservatives: The Trump experiment is over -

June 17, 2017

UMass basketball lands transfer Kieran Hayward from LSU -

May 18, 2017

UMass basketball’s Donte Clark transferring to Coastal Carolina -

May 17, 2017

Report: Keon Clergeot transfers to UMass basketball program -

May 15, 2017

Despite title-game loss, Meg Colleran’s brilliance in circle was an incredible feat -

May 14, 2017

UMass softball loses in heartbreaker in A-10 title game -

May 14, 2017

Navy sinks UMass women’s lacrosse 23-11 in NCAA tournament second round, ending Minutewomen’s season -

May 14, 2017

UMass softball advances to A-10 Championship game -

May 13, 2017

How bad is cheating?

This week, Thierry Henry introduced France’s own “Hand of God” goal to the soccer world. It (possibly) gave them their entrance into the World Cup this coming year.

And to the dismay of the Irish, it is because of pure cheating.

The original “Hand of God” goal, if you didn’t know, was during a game in the 1986 World Cup (you know, the biggest sporting event in the world) between England and Argentina. Diego Maradona, one of the greatest footballers of all time, reached into the air and handballed the ball into the goal on a cross, giving Argentina the lead, and eventually the win.

Completely illegal? Yes. Completely badass? Also yes.

Does France care that Henry used a handball to give him an advantage to cross it for a goal? No. Does Argentina care that Maradona handballed a goal instead of in some “fair” way? No.

Does any outside person really care? Only if they’re trying to prove a point, or if they’re one of those goody two shoes that everyone tries to avoid.

All of us got the idea that cheating is wrong pounded into our brains from the moment we were kids. But is it really so bad?

One of my friends and I talked about this a lot this past summer. To both of us, it obviously is preferential to do things honestly, but maybe only because there is no risk involved in that method. Cheating is, like most things, a life skill – If you can do it properly, why not go for it?

In high school, I did my fair share of cheating. I think I cheated on every biology test my freshman year, and I got Ds on every single one except the one chapter I read. I used to go online and look up who people were during my AP U.S. history tests, and I think I got Cs on all of those. I shrunk, because I knew my teacher’s copy machine code, all the words and definitions for my final vocabulary test and distributed them out to the class, only to not use one and do very well on it, while most people who used it did poorly.

It took me a long time to realize that I was really bad at cheating and I shouldn’t do it.

So I gave it up, partly because I am lazy and don’t care that much, partly because I suck at it and do better not cheating at all. Maybe because doing the work actually produces better work, but I don’t know about that.

In one of my classes, I saw some kid in the back row on his phone looking things up online. And it got me thinking, because I can’t remember the last time I cheated on a test and forgot the feeling: “What a jerk.”

A lot of that feeling was because he was so horrible at it. He was trying to be discreet, but he was just a fool in fool’s clothing. Trying to sneakily play around with his phone, typing things into it, acting like no one knew what he was doing. I contemplated telling my professor, mostly because he deserved it for being so dumb, but I refrained from doing so.

In the end, you get what’s coming for you. In his case, sure, he may not have been caught this time, because most people in the class probably pitied him, but he was either too dumb to learn it, or too lazy with no quality that would make up for the laziness.

A sad set of qualities indeed.

But even if he had the ability to overcome his laziness by cheating, I couldn’t possibly care less about “cheating yourself,” but it indirectly cheats other people as well by the way of grade inflation.

Yet, I still say go for the gold.

Ben Moriarty is a Collegian columnist. He can be reached at bmoriart@student.umass.edu.

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