The NFL is bulletproof. Period. It’s an inarguable point, so don’t you go tryin’.
So let that crucial fact sink in for the sake of context, and the rest of what I say will make sense.
The NFL blew this so hard. So, so hard. Giving Ray Rice a two game suspension for decking his soon-to-be-wife in an elevator is preposterous. What happened next, depending on your interpretation, was anywhere from complete and utter mismanagement to a travesty of the highest possible order. Did Roger Goodell see the tape and choose to sweep it under the rug, or let it slide? Did he go out of his way to avoid seeing it, so as to keep his feet out of the fire? Or was his position ultimately one of defiance, some sort of grand “it’s none of your business and I’ll run my league however I see fit” decree by a dude who is fully aware that he can basically do whatever the fuck he wants with his league and it’s constituents?
There isn’t a good answer.
What about the other domestic violence cases under Goodell’s watch? Deadpsin published a list today of every domestic violence case under Roger’s watch, and what else can I say but, man, what a clusterfuck. Granted, some of these cases were dropped (possibly under shady circumstances, of course) but man, a large number of them came and went with zero punishment from the league. Zero. Surely, these are unfathomable crimes against not only women, but humanity? Surely, something needed (and still needs) to be done about Goodell’s seeming nonchalance toward this very serious problem?
Oh, and the concussions. Can’t forget those now. Years of neglect of the physical well being of the NFL’s all-too-disposable workforce, including players being sent back into games with their brains rattled, or not taken out at all. Little or nothing being done to address an epidemic that resulted in not just brain damage, not just men like Dave Duerson and Junior Seau committing suicide by shooting themselves in the chest so that their severely damaged brains could be studied post-Mortem after deciding they could no longer live with severe brain trauma, but players like Steve Smith and Steve Gleason (among many others) developing ALS (almost certainly as a result of repeated head trauma), having their lives reduced to this:
And yet, after all of the suffering and death and tragedy and malfeasance, Goodell was able to make it all go away (for the time being) by scribbling his name on a 765 million dollar check. So then, do the fucking math already. Roger Goodell is, by any sane account, a horrible commissioner. Power hungry, callous, and worst of all, beyond reproach. Oh, the owners love him, and why shouldn’t they? He’s the bad cop they’d all love to be, but can’t. He’s the enforcer of all of their nonsense. Still, this latest incident is the last straw. Or it should be, that is.
Yeah, the president of the National Organization for Women is calling for Goodell to step down. You know what? Old Rog’ ain’t the least bit worried. And Why should he be? He’s the most powerful man in the most powerful sports organization this country has ever seen, and he’s ruled it with an iron fist and not even a hint of censure. If I were him, I wouldn’t be the least bit worried either.
So then, with this fucking guy just running wild, living large (Goodell made 44 million dollars last year alone) and doing as he pleases, when is enough going to be enough? If you are a woman (or a man for that matter) and are incensed by what the league has or has not done regarding domestic violence, what are you going to do? Are you going to wring your hands, shake a fist at the sky and complain, or are you going to do something?
If you (and there are millions of you who feel this way, I have no doubt) are someone who is torn between their love of the game of football and the dreadful culture of violence, misogyny and mindlessness that has basically swallowed the sport whole, what is your move? Are you going to be willfully hypocritical and turn a blind eye, or are you going to decide to make something happen here? Are you doing to vote with your remote, and your dollars? Are you gonna talk about it, or be about it? Like i said at the top, Roger Goodell is bullet proof. Invincible. Totally impervious to any and all judgement or action.
He is above the law.
Thing is, he is all of those things because you have let him be. If you want him out, get him out. Now is the time.
Or keep watching and supporting the NFL like a good little consumer should. Doesn’t make a difference to me, really. I’ve made my choice.
(Agree? disagree? By all means, leave a comment below)