Blurred Lines within the NFL – Jamie Arena

It is difficult for me to understand why domestic violence takes place, and how anyone with a heart can justify it. Luckily, I have never witnessed domestic violence first hand, but that is a reason pushing me to unveil the details behind such abuse. Recently, the subject of domestic violence has become extremely relevant within the NFL community including staff, players, and fans. Ray Rice, former Baltimore Raven’s running back,  has been in headlines for The New York Times, ESPN, and Fox News because a video that went viral of him punching his fiance. What are the consequences for his assault within his organization of work? As of right now Rice is cut from the Ravens and Roger Goodell, the Commissioner of the NFL, has suspended him from the league. Is that justifiable enough? Apparently not for Rice. He is attempting to appeal the organizations decision, and has until 11;59 pm on Tuesday, September 16 to do so. I keep wondering to myself how could something so cruel ever have the chance for an appeal. There is simply a flaw in the system. Rice served a two game suspension for the act, under the leagues Personal Conduct Policy (which is ridiculously too lenient in my opinion). Currently, Rice could fight his second suspension by claiming article 46 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement. Within the agreement it is stated that the NFL commissioner and the specific club can not penalize a single player for the same act. Rice will possibly argue that the league could not suspend him twice, or that there could not be a suspension on top of having his multi-year contract terminated by the Baltimore Ravens. Also, there is possible cause of public influence, but only if the commissioner punished him after the video had gone viral and felt pressured by the public. But would it potentially be wrong for the public to pressure him? I don’t think so at all. The National Football League is a public organization, whose supporters are the general public. It is the public who watches games on television, who purchases merchandise, tickets, and memorabilia. It is the public who gives the players, managers, and owners a need to work. Without the public’s acceptance, the NFL shouldn’t make any rash decisions. So, if Goodell’s decision was based on the publics influence, then good for him and good for the NFL. Aside from the public’s influence, the league itself needs to make administrative changes in order to avoid loopholes when laws are broken. The league should be less worried about what superficially tarnishes their reputation, and more worried about what makes them an admirable league of legally abiding athletes and employees. Aside from the league itself, how much responsibility should be put on law enforcement? What role do they play in this? Lastly, I wonder if the reprocussions would be different if Ray Rice were not a celebrity.

64 thoughts on “Blurred Lines within the NFL – Jamie Arena

  1. This is a great piece on the Ray Rice drama. I completely agree with you on all of the points you have made. The fact that he wants to appeal the decision to suspend him from the league is insane. By putting himself in the public eye as an NFL player he is also a role model for many people and domestic abuse is not the kind of behavior a role model should demonstrate. Therefore, he needs to be thoroughly punished in order to pay for his crimes and to show the public that the NFL doesn’t support this type of behavior. A simple suspension isn’t near enough punishment for punching one’s fiance in the face. I also saw the video and there were bystanders who just watched her lie on the floor and didn’t help. This floors me to think of the humiliation she faced on top of the brutality of abuse. This is a notice for everyone that domestic abuse is real and is experienced in all sectors of life.

  2. I agree with you on everything, but I do think he should have the chance to appeal. That is his right as an NFL player to appeal the decision of the NFL. We can be upset with him and the NFL, but just because he did something morally wrong we cannot take away his due process.

  3. The situation is awful and it was terrifying to watch the video. But one question that comes to mind is, why did she marry him a month after this incident happened? I believe that answer to that question is that this was not the first time he abused her, this was the first time it was on camera and was leaked. Another question that comes to mind is, how did part of the video get leaked first:then came the suspension, but later the public saw the entire video and now suddenly he is terminated. I believe the Ravens commissioner saw the entire video to begin with and had to bribe someone not to release it entirely, but apparently that did not last long. It’s ashame that he may no longer get to play pro ball but every action has a reaction. And the league is making an example out him. And of course if he were not in the public eye he would not have so many repercussions, no one would probably care unfortunately.

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