Did common sense finally prevail? No, it didn’t. The NFL finally made the decision to suspend world renowned, undefeated, “gender-mixed-elevator-cage match” champ Ray Rice only after the recent video of him taking out his latest opponent surfaced. With all the bad press surrounding their original decision to suspend the champ for only two games, they couldn’t afford to stumble again. Indefinite suspension. Hey, they finally got it right. Pure genius. In light of what both videos show and their original response, someone else needs to be sent packing. Someone in the hierarchy of the NFL. And I’m not talking about some PR flak or an un-named staffer. Maybe someone in a position of authority with shit for brains. How about good old Roger Goodell?
I don’t know about you Roger, but when I saw the first video, you know, the one where this 220 pound seething bag of steroid filled rage drags an unconscious female by the shoulders across the elevator floor into the hotel corridor, my mind went immediately to “hey the sonofabitch knocked her out.” Gee Rog’, couldn’t make that leap by yourself? Let’s see, they get in together and then magically, he’s dragging her limp body out like a bag of yesterday’s dirty practice uniforms. Well, we gotta protect the franchise at all cost. Can’t have that, let’s suspend this wife-beater for two games. The good name of the NFL remains intact. Which is probably more than we can say for Janay Palmer’s dental work.
So exactly what did you suspend him for? Dragging his unconscious wife across the floor in public? Was that the stain on the NFL you were trying to wash way? Or were you afraid of the players’ union, who probably would have defended him to the end even if he was spattered with her blood?
Not buying the fact that you or the league hadn’t seen the full video either. The league has teams of investigators, many ex-FBI agents, and you mean to tell me no one, not one person looking into what happened here thought to ask the casino for any video inside the elevator? Or did they even care to know how Mrs. Rice just happened to become prone? When it didn’t come out (or was suppressed?) the NFL had a manageable affair on their hands. A little suspension, some league funded counseling for the criminal and his speed-bag wife, and we’re all set for the season. This is a league that has between ten and twenty cameras at every game and spends countless agonizing minutes under the review hood to determine if some arcane undecipherable infraction has occurred and it never dawned on anyone that there might be a reason why this woman was lights out as her brute of a husband dragged her face across the floor? And hey, maybe just maybe, if there was one camera angle, there might be another? Lying bastards.
Almost as sickening (almost, but never quite to par) as a man beating a woman a hundred pounds lighter than he, is the piling on by all the righteous, virtuous idiots currently espousing how disgusted they too are over his actions. Well, at least now that the true brutality of his nature is on full display. Easy to condemn him now isn’t it, you spineless cowards? Where was your indignation when the first video came out? Were you too, like Goodell, thinking at that time that gee, that’s tough, but he got two games and now we can move on? Nothing to see here folks, move along. Didn’t quite play out that way and now we find ourselves treated to talking heads, players, coaches and NFL officials horrified over a video that clearly shows what they all knew dammed well happened in that elevator in the first place, each one of them a feckless Captain Renault; “I’m shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here!”
Football is a violet sport, played by men with violet tendencies; many juiced up beyond their limited capacities to make good decisions. So be it. I can take the sport or leave it. But we continue to wonder what the hell is wrong with society as we make excuses for the behavior of miscreants like this. Go Team! We’re the “hear no evil, see no evil” society now. We all knew he punched her lights out and we were fine with his suspension. (The colloquial we.) Hey we were even fine with the Ravens trying to resurrect Rice’s image by tweeting a comment from their press conference in May implicating Janay in her own beating: “Janay Rice says she deeply regrets the role that she played the night of the incident.”
It’s up to the fans and the owners. Start picking side folks. You can continue to buy the jerseys of your favorite felon, pay over a hundred dollars to get a good seat close enough to look into the eyes of criminals or you can demand better. Will the owners demand more from the league? Will the league demand more from itself? Will the union continue to protect these hero-villains at all costs? Will you sit there, a willing fan, apologist or co-conspirator?