Who's going to be the 'player representative' after Venus?
This was a role that Lindsay Davenport handled well, as Venus does now. Sometimes, a player has to address the issues, and talk to the suit in various countries, bothing knowing the issues and representing the other athletes. As far as I know, it's not like some kind of elected position. It's something BJK did, but Chris Evert wasn't wild about.
But when Venus isn't the 'go to' person, among the players, on tour issues, who will be? Somebody who's won a couple slams, smart, well-spoken, and willing to spend time talking to sponsors and tour organizers as an equal, not arm candy.
Sharapova obviously has the cred and the popularity, but is reputed to be .... somewhat 'icy' when not in front of the camera. Not really an issue if she can be the 'TV interview Sharapova' for four or five hours at a time, while talking to men who'd rather bang her than listen to her. Ivanovic seems a bit young, none of the current crop is Hingis, Mauresmo seems like a bit of an introvert, Jankovic? Hmmmm ... needs to win some majors, but she's not afraid to speak up. Who does Russian media go to for a quote? Dementieva? Especially after the Olympic win, a good choice. And she provides sound-bites.
You don't ask a teenager to go toe-to-toe with a conference room full of 55 year old investment bankers. That's a job for adults. But tennis players don't spend much time at the top as adults. Which, to be honest, is one of the problems with the tour. By the time the players know what they really need, and what to demand, and what to give up, they're retiring and going after real life. Not many stay involved with the WTA.
Proud to be an American
Not blind. Not uninformed. We are party to atrocities. But the response of the world after 9/11 is worth noting. Even our most dire enemies offered aid. We should all be so lucky.