The All Boys Club

stadiumOn Friday, September 12, 2014, The New York Times ran a front page article entitled, “Ray Rice Is an Outlier: Most Suspects Play On.” Albeit a female, the reporter had to “stick to the script,” only giving an account of the facts as she had researched them; keeping any, and all opinions to herself. This makes me extremely happy I live in America where I – little old me – can make my voice heard. In this piece, she cited three different instances where professional athletics abused their wives/girlfriends. A pitcher from the Philadelphia Phillies assaulted his wife, witnesses saying he hit her in the face and pulled her hair; a goaltender with the Colorado Avalanche, a National Hockey team kicked his girlfriend to the floor, stomping her in the chest. Lastly, she mentioned a defensive lineman with the San Francisco 49ers who also abused his expectant fiancée.

Let me first of all say, there are women down the line in administration in these organizations, but I believe they do not, and will never have a say in what clearly are, “All Boys’ Clubs.” We are well aware, these associations are set a part from the court systems, and I’ve read that any one group will not hand out any strict punishment until a Judge has handed down his, or her decision. In this I completely disagree. As one is not contingent on the other, why wait for a judicial ruling? Without question, there has to be a “NO TOLERANCE” attitude taken on by any league, because otherwise, isn’t the meaning one of clear condoning? My simple message: Domestic violence of any sort is reason for dismissal – not only from the team, but from the alliance. I have also read somewhere along the way that coaches are willing to forgive and forget, because a particular player is such a value to his team. As always, I’m left reminding, and asking anyone if they would allow some guy to abuse their sister or daughter? Would you then, say – “Well, you know he is a good provider, and he loves her.” When does violence spell L – O – V – E?

Yes, every country is proud of their professional sports teams; this has been since Greek Olympic games, or what have you held at the Colosseum in Greece, or Italy. But, to allow a player to suit up, or even come into the stadium, because a verdict has not been made by any court system is, in my opinion, beyond shocking. It is my belief, if you mess up, you’re gone. And, don’t anyone try to explain why this person is such an asset to the team – he’s the best at whatever – if he abuses his wife, or girlfriend that moves him backward in development. You cannot put a price on a woman’s sanity, safety, and well being. I have read conflicting research, indicating that low self-esteem is not a reason why some women tolerate this type of behavior, and others that definitely link the disorder to accepting abuse. I have to say again, how can any one stable person describe this kind of mistreatment as love.

Have the women who ran along the streets of Baltimore in support of “their” team, stepped back for even a minute to remember the then girlfriend knocked unconscious, and dragged shamefully along the floor, while the world stood by as witness? We know this type of man is acting out what he has seen growing up through the years, and that he has absolutely no respect whatsoever for any female. But, shame on these #27 jersey wearing people, because they too have condoned this outrage. Ray Rice told the Entertainment & Sports Programming Network (ESPN), “We have a lot of people praying for us.” I say we all pray that this young woman’s eyes are opened, because if she’s been abused once, it’s only a matter of time before it’s revisited. Tell me what you think.

Information from Deadspin, NY Times, ESPN & CBS News