The NFL is Officially the Most Hated (and Beloved) Sports League in America
The NFL is once again failing to take a stand against violence. Go figure. The league faced unanimous uproar last week when they handed down a suspension to Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice. What was this poor athlete’s crime? In March, Rice was indicted by a grand jury on the charge of third degree assault for knocking his fiancée unconscious. Bolstering the charge, a video emerged online showing Rice carrying his unconscious girlfriend out of an elevator. The NFL handed down some swift justice by suspending Rice for two games. Yes, two games.
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell handed down the sanction. Let’s do a quick comparison of Rice’s sentence and other sanctions handed down by Goodell. In 2010, Terrelle Pryor was sanctioned for violating NCAA rules by selling football memorabilia to a tattoo artist. His sentence: suspended for 5 games. In 2008, Dallas Cowboy’s coach Wade Wilson was sanctioned for using performance-enhancing drugs (HGH) to treat his diabetes. His sentence: suspended for 5 games. Recently, wide receiver Josh Gordon was sanctioned for testing positive for marijuana on multiple occasions. His sentence: suspended for 16 games.
Let’s do the math. According to their sentencing guidelines, the NFL, and commissioner Goodell, take the stance that unauthorized sale of memorabilia and use of PEDs to treat a health condition are more than twice as bad as an indictment for third degree assault against a woman. Furthermore, testing positive for marijuana, a legal drug in multiple states, is eight times as bad as getting caught on tape dragging your girlfriend from an elevator shortly after BEATING HER UNCONSCIOUS. Does this all sound too awful to be true? Don’t worry; I have included the incriminating video below for your viewing pleasure.
Rice’s sanction is just the last in a laundry list of NFL controversies. Last month the Redskin’s fought tooth and nail to keep their team name, even though the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, and the majority of the Native American population, find it to be a racial slur. Further, earlier this month, the NFL settled a massive class action lawsuit for their alleged fraud in handling concussions. Once again, let’s do the math. The NFL is an organization that defends the use of racial slurs, allegedly, fraudulently handled concussion protocols that lead to long-term health aliments of their former players, and believes that smoking pot is far worse than beating a woman unconscious. Yes kids, “hugs not drugs.”*
As a long time fan of the NFL, this recent string of unjustifiable behavior has been extremely difficult to cover. The NFL has broken our collective hearts again and again. The reality of the situation is that that they are unlikely to change. As the most popular sports league in America, they have no reason to. We keep giving them our hard-earned money, and they continue to display the same barbarian attitudes that we champion from their players.
*Even hugs that involve an uppercut to your fiancee’s face are significantly better then any sort of drugs.
Image courtesy of Wallstreethotrod