The NFL and Domestic Violence

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We’ve long heard the arguments that our kids will be scarred and forever altered by violence in video games or movies, despite parents educating our impressionable youths that it’s merely make-believe.

So what do we say when it’s real-life role models (for better or worse) demonstrating violence?

Domestic violence attorney Nicki Ford is speaking out on the subject. She recently chatted with Yahoo Sports’ Eric Adelson about the NFL’s problems and she has graciously written the below.

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With the attention hyper-focused on NFL players and domestic violence, it’s been a refreshing national dialogue (and outrage) at the lack of culpability the league is placing on players.

Ray Rice is the most prolific player to be involved in DV…but the list is long. Greg Hardy, convicted of DV has received no punishment, other than deactivation as of this past weekend (however he remains on the payroll). Santonio Holmes, Brandon Marshall, and now Ray MacDonald to name recent stars… All involved in alleged or confirmed DV.

Now Adrian Peterson faces indictment from a grand jury… but in child abuse allegations.

The stark difference? The Vikings made the bold (and correct choice as far as I’m concerned) to deactivate Peterson until the criminal justice process plays out.

Sadly, it take allegedly harming a child to elicit action from the NFL or one of its teams…allegedly beating your partner/spouse/mother of your child? That’s dismissible for the sake of a win… at least that’s what the NFL’s actions (or lack thereof) seems to say to the general public.

These role models should be held to a higher standard and a higher level of scrutiny Children admire and aspire to be like Peterson, Rice, Hardy. They should be above reproach. Not forgiven for their transgressions simply because they can catch a ball.

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Vikings’ swift call to sit Adrian Peterson is approach Ravens should have taken

Imagine looking up at Adrian Peterson through the eyes of a four-year-old child.

The easy smile that helped make him famous is not there. He’s holding a switch. You are a little boy with your pants down and leaves in your mouth…

“Most jobs, if you’re charged with a serious crime, they’d put you on paid administrative leave because they wouldn’t want you acting in your full capacity while the due process does play out,” Ford said.

Read the full article here.

2 Comments

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2 Responses to The NFL and Domestic Violence

  1. Your post went live literally half an hour after the Vikings reinstated Adrian Peterson. (I’m sure you wrote this and scheduled it earlier today or yesterday.) It’s sickening to think that a win (aka money) is more important than the tone of responsibility and respect that the NFL sets for its players.

    HOWEVER, I think every adult should be responsible for their behavior and not take the cop out of “oh well, I had poor role models in Ray Rice or Adrian Peterson.” The argument the media keeps making that this behavior sets a precedent for other spouses to abuse their partners or other parents to abuse their children is weak. These (and other men) are human and have made some very poor decisions. The only thing another human being should learn from them is not to repeat these grievous mistakes.

    • Sigh…I saw that news mere minutes after hitting publish.

      I wholeheartedly agree with your second point as well. What is my bigger concern on such a spotlighted stage is not that suddenly men will think it’s ok to abuse others (women, children, men, animals or little green martians), but that society’s priorities are becoming so jaded that the rest of us turn a blind eye to such transgressions because, “Hey, our team won.” To me, this victimizes the abused a second time.

      Everyone of us needs to be held accountable for our own actions. Cause and effect, behavior and consequence.

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