NFL treatment of domestic violence must be consistent
Roger Goodell has got to go.
As if the NFL commissioner’s favorability could possibly take a hit following high-profile scandals like questionable concussion protocol and deflate-gate, here we are.
Last week, news broke that New York Giants kicker Josh Brown had been abusing his now ex-wife physically, mentally and emotionally.
Brown himself admitted to feeling like he was God and his then-wife was his slave, according to ESPN.
Given the league’s ongoing push against domestic violence following incidents involving Ray Rice and Greg Hardy, one would think a strict punishment would be brought down by Roger Goodell because, after all, that’s his job.
Sadly, that’s not the case.
Rice, a running back for the Baltimore Ravens at the time, was suspended indefinitely from the league and had his contract terminated.
And rightfully so. TMZ infamously released a video of Rice assaulting his then girlfriend, sparking outrage.
Goodell’s incompetence takes the focus away from the welfare of the victims, puts their personal grief on public display, and shows a disregard for their well-being.
The disturbing reality is that Goodell does not care about the league’s — and society overall’s) — ongoing problem of domestic violence as much as he has made us think.
Back in 2014, the NFL released a domestic violence campaign featuring a number of top athletes speaking out against the cowardly act. Progress?
That same year, Hardy was convicted of assaulting a woman, sentenced to probation and placed on the exempt list, according to ESPN.
He was still paid.
He was still able to be around his teammates — no progress.
Flash forward to 2016, and Brown has also been placed on Goodell’s exempt list.
What has been even more troubling has been the rhetoric surrounding the situation.
Teammates have brushed it aside as an off-the-field issue.
They have expressed great support for their teammate who is just going through a tough situation and needs help.
While Brown clearly has issues to work through, he is not the one who needs our sympathy — that should be his victim.
These same Giants teammates criticized an overly-cocky and emotional Odell Beckham for his distracting antics on the field.
Considering the fact that Beckham Jr. never physically harmed anyone or broke any rules, their responses are baffling.
It is my belief that Goodell, being the man in charge, sets the tone for the rest of the league.
If he condemns certain actions, those who work under his leadership will as well, if only to remain in his good graces.
Goodell is more concerned with outlandish touchdown celebrations than he is with the integrity of the men who represent the NFL and subsequently become role models.
Goodell has been inconsistent, missing key opportunities to do his job well and effectively.
I guess he is only concerned with poor character when it becomes public.
Carter is the opinion editor.