- Category: Volume 86 (Fall 2014 - Spring 2015)
- Published: 01 October 2014
In this country, football is a great American tradition. Many individuals, especially a large population of the youth, idolize the strong, tough and larger-than-life NFL players.
However, as more stories of domestic violence begin to surface as a result of recent crimes, many are jumping on the bandwagon and making the decision to #BoycottNFL.
I believe that anyone, especially women, are completely justified in their anger, disbelief or disgust in Roger Goodell and the criminal activities that are occurring without consequence in the National Football League under his leadership.
Most people are all too familiar with the Ray Rice case that has been dominating our TV screens, news feeds, magazine headlines and internet searches. Is that type of extreme violence really what it takes to get our attention and cause us to act? Is it not until a famous NFL player hits his fiancé so hard that he renders her unconscious that the public's eyes will be open to the truth?
We would all probably still be left in the dark if not for that infamous Rice elevator video being leaked to the media. It was not until then that the NFL and it's commissioner Goodell could no longer conceal the truth for the sake of keeping their player in the game.
As horrific as this Rice fiasco is, it is not the first by any stretch of the imagination. In fact, according to The New York Times, 713 NFL players have been arrested since 2000. 88 of those were documented under assualt and battery, while 85 of them were domestic violence cases.
At this point you may be asking yourself "so why haven't I heard about all of these situations?" and the sad, ugly, truth is because the NFL did not want you to.
And why is that? The obvious answer is that most likely that these NFL commissioners, owners and coaches do not want to lose their superstar players to suspension or jail time. After all, the NFL wants to continue making big money, and these talented players that fans adopt as favorites assist in doing so.
However, for me that begs the question, "Well, is that ethical?" And in my opinion, the answer to that is unequivocally "no it is not."
What kind of message is the NFL projecting to the public about treating females by protecting their players involved in domestic violence cases? It seems that the message, whether intended or unintended is that it is okay to hit, disrespect, and abuse females.
I love football as much as everyone else does and I enjoy watching every game every Sunday. I have my favorite teams and my favorite players. After learning about all of these issues relating to domestic violence with many NFL players, however, it is very hard for me to sit on my couch and watch these games knowing that there are dozens of players that have been involved in situations where they hurt and physically assaulted their wives, fiancés, girlfriends, and even mothers.
For example, Ray McDonald of the San Francisco 49ers was arrested for domestic violence against his pregnant fiancé, who had bruising all over her body, or Daryl Washington of the Arizona Cardinals who was arrested for grabbing his then girlfriend by the throat and throwing her to the ground. Even Dez Bryant of the Dallas Cowboys was charged with misdemeanor family violence for apparently striking his mother in the face and pushing her. The mother claimed he tried to kill her.
Are these the kind of individuals we want our public watching on television and idolizing, or the players we want our children looking up to? These types of men hardly seem to be role-model material.
As these ugly truths are surfacing, the public is also enraged that certain corporations that are supposed to stand for women, such as Covergirl, are still partnering with the NFL for profit. I think their anger is justified.
A photoshopped "Get Your Game Face On" ad that has gone viral on the internet and social media showing the models with bruised and bloody faces is definitely making a powerful statement that, I as a woman, am on board with.
The statement that as woman and as a country, we should not stand for domestic violence, let alone glorify it and it is not an issue that should be taken lightly.
Whether or not this issue happens with the average joe or a superstar athlete it should not be tolerated and there should be harsher consequences; if for no other reason, then at least to teach the next generation the difference between right and wrong.
IMAGE TAKEN from eonline.com