Remember this disaster? NFL football player Ray Rice knocks out his fiancee cold. It’s caught on video, yet Rice is rewarded by the NFL – with a pink jersey showcasing his game jersey number on it. Until the rest of the video coverage was leaked and the NFL couldn’t pretend anymore.
This article was published in the Onslow Times on 7/30/14. It was written by Marena Groll, who did a column for the Onslow Times. Marena’s articles are no longer available online at the Onslow Times (which folded), so at least now we have this one here.
He himself just knocked
Photo Credit: TMZ Sports
NFL’s “Beat Her Unconscious” Pink Jersey Sale! $59.95
He drags her unconscious body out of the elevator. It’s hard to watch. We don’t know what happened inside, but we see his disturbing efforts to move her limp frame and prop her up. It was caught on the security camera of the Revel Casino in Atlantic City, N.J. in February. The fact was that Janay Palmer had been knocked unconscious inside the elevator by a blow from Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens running back. Rice was her fiancée who she married shortly after cameras recorded him dragging her from the elevator.
The traditional rhetoric was employed by his lawyers and team spokespersons to minimize the altercation. Even the initial reports painted it with the “mutual spat” brush. Both were arrested for striking each other with their hands. Simple assault – domestic violence.
However, full scrutiny of the evidence of the interior elevator footage which was not publicly released, resulted in the charges against her being dropped. The charges against him were upgraded to aggravated assault. Gentle readers, mutuality is never really part of the equation when one person walks away and the other has to be mopped up.
There was the obligatory at-his-side apology of regret from Janay for her part in him knocking her out. It was triumphantly tweeted by the Baltimore Ravens – “Janay Rice says she deeply regrets the role that she played the night of the incident.” We know women know they provoke these things. And dutifully to avoid jail time, he opted to participate in pretrial intervention programming permitting him to have the charges dropped. As a part of that arrangement though, he will have to get counseling and refrain from rearranging his wife’s cerebral cortex. So there you have it Raven fans. Rah-Rah, resolved.
You can ask the obvious questions about why she stays. The answers will not be simple. Ask any battered partner to lay it out for you. But, there is nothing complex about why Rice only received a two game suspension from the NFL. There is nothing complex about the good-old-boy battering words of Coach John Harbaugh,
“It’s not a big deal, it’s just part of the process,” Harbaugh said, via ESPN. “There are consequences when you make a mistake like that. I stand behind Ray. He’s a heck of a guy. He’s done everything right since. He makes a mistake, alright? He’s going to have to pay a consequence. I think that’s good for kids to understand it works that way. That’s how it works, that’s how it should be.”
Not complex at all because what kiddo of us hasn’t made the doggone mistake of beating a woman unconscious? Even heck-of-a-guys sometimes make trivial mistakes like forgetting where they put their car keys or forgetting where not to put their fists.
It’s not complex, because it’s not really about a heck-of-a-guy. It’s about a heck-of-a-lot of money. From Sports Illustrated February 20, 2014,
“Rice’s five-year, $35 million deal signed in July 2012 includes $22 million in guaranteed cash, and if the Ravens chose to cut the former Pro Bowler, they would lose over $14 million against the 2014 salary cap by doing so prior to July 1.”
A woman’s life will never be worth what the NFL could lose to her abuser. Or what the NFL can make off him.
Ladies, the NFL will be returning Rice to the field just in time for him to join the other players sporting their pink uniforms to let you know how much they care about your breasts. Your brains not so much, especially inside elevators. But, for $59.95, you can demonstrate your financial support of the NFL as they help you fight cancer. As Deadspin’s Samer Kalaf quoted on July 24, 2014,
“You love watching your Ravens defeat the competition—especially when Ray Rice is on the field. Show your support for Baltimore and your favorite player with this Draft Him Shimmer V-neck tee. It boasts a team logo on the front with a #27 embellished with rhinestones, and has Rice’s name and number on the back, so everyone can see that you’re rooting for the best!”
A two game suspension and a $59.95 pink jersey sale cheering a man who beat his bride-to-be unconscious.
Welcome to the best of the NFL.
Learn more at these links.
- http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/2014/5/23/5744964/ray-rice-arrest-assault-statement-apology-ravens – includes timeline on case.
- http://deadsp.in/1xiAnbu – Ladies Buy Your Pink Jerseys Today
Submitted for publication for 7-30-2014 Edition Onslow Times, Onslow County, NC