Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Domestic Abuse and The NFL

I'm wrestling with this Ray Rice thing, mostly due to the way it appears to have been covered up by the Baltimore Ravens, as well as the apparent untruthfulness of the NFL Commissioner, Roger Goodell.  This whole situation stinks, and that's above and beyond the real issue, domestic abuse.  We're finding out now that the video that came to light this week showing the confrontation between Ray Rice and his then-fiancee inside the elevator (and I'm calling it a confrontation even though it wasn't; Rice punched her in the face and knocked her out!), which even this week both the team and the League (Goodell) claimed they had not seen until this week, was sent to Goodell several months ago.  And now they appear as if they are just reacting to how the media and the public reacted to the video, rather than taking more of a proactive role.  The other major issue was a tweet by the Ravens earlier this year stating, and I'm paraphrasing, that Janay Palmer regretted her role in the incident resulting in Ray punching her.  The team later, recently, deleted that tweet.  What this tells me is that the team attempted to show their support for Ray Rice by making it sound like he was justified in punching her, then later, after the video was made public, deciding they had better get rid of the evidence.  How wrong is that?!?

All of this has caused me to lose a lot of interest in football in general.  I'm still anxious to see my Steelers play, and that probably makes me sound like a hypocrite. But I can't just turn it off.  However, I WAS very disappointed last week that the folks I did fantasy football with decided they didn't want to play this year, and now, this week, I'm glad we're not.  My interest has dropped that much.  In addition, I made a big deal last week here in this blog about choosing who I thought would win the Week One games, and now, this week, I have no interest in choosing winners.  So that's where I've changed as a result of the domestic abuse issue and the NFL's response to it.

Interestingly, the Steelers are playing the Ravens this week (Thursday night), and I would normally be excited about this game, but it has almost become secondary to the Ray Rice story.  That's a shame.  But this story is just such a big deal, and it will change how many fans look at the sport.  There are other situations similar to this one still unresolved involving NFL players, and these will have to be addressed.

The best reaction to this whole thing is a blog I read a few hours ago HERE, and while it's an extreme opinion, I definitely agree with the sentiment.  Domestic abuse is a major issue in our country, and it scares me to think that so many are affected by it.  The NFL could help by taking a more active role in fighting it.  It remains to be seen whether they are up to it.

Have a great evening, everyone!

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