First of all, the Commissioner of the NFL Roger Goodell doesn’t have the guts to answer questions in a real press conference. He had to hide behind the noise of the wind and others talking around him to answer questions about the Ray Rice suspension. What was he trying to hide? The answer is that the NFL does not care about women as fans or give a rats hind end for their safety.
Here is what he said and my comments on those responses.
Our policy is clear.
The NFL policy on abuse of women is anything but clear. In 2010 Ben Roethlisberger was accused of sexual battery in Georgia. Although it was the second accusation of sexual abuse against him no charges were filed in either case. Goodell suspended Roethlisberger for 6 games. Under appeal it was ultimately reduced to 4 games. Until now that was the standard. Now that standard has been reduced to a gentle tap on the back of the hand.
In this case not only did Rice admit guilt (it is hard to deny when there is video evidence of the crime) but he was sentenced. Admittedly the penalty of a diversionary program is not sever. But it was a conviction and sentencing anyway.
The NFL has a very firm policy that domestic violence is not acceptable.
Rog, you had a fairly firm policy but that was thrown out with the Rice decision. Now the NFL has told women they are own against NFL players. Before even an accusation was enough to generate a suspension. Now anything goes and the penalty will be just a couple of games.
You run through the process of evaluating the issue and if there will be discipline
There could not have been a lot of evaluating on the Rice issue. There was video inside as well as outside the elevator where the assault took place. I am sure that the NFL got video of the assault. Even so, they still let Rice off lightly.
You have an opportunity to sit down with that individual to determine how that individual is reacting to it.
Frankly, I don’t care how he reacted to his attack on his lady. Of course he is sorry that he was caught on video. He is sorry he had to talk with Goodell. But that does not diminish what he did.
Criminal justice system put him in a diversionary program with no discipline
By accepting entry to the diversionary program, Rice admitted he was guilty. The fact that he got off with next to no punishment should not have affected his discipline by the league. Could it be that Atlantic City likes having NFL players come to town. With a number of casinos shutting down, it looks like they can use all the visitors they can get.
We thought it was appropriate to have discipline.
Then Rog, why did you tap Rice on the back of the hand rather than making a point with a substantial suspension?
Ray has said he wants to make a powerful difference in this area.
Rog, he has made a powerful difference in the area of spouse abuse. Every future abuser will appeal the suspension claiming that the “Rice Principle” should be applied. You made sure that we will hear about the light suspension for years to come.
We have to remain consistent. We can’t just make up discipline. It has to be consistent with other cases.
I explained how consistent the Rice decision was in my article “Roger Goodell’s NFL Wheel of Misfortune!” which appears below this post. Rog, you seem to pulling the suspensions for abuse of females out of your …. You have been making up discipline as you go based on very little. This has to stop.
I heard from Ray and Janay.
Confronted with you, your staff, the management of the Ravens, and her new husband, Janay had no choice but to comply with the company line of what happened. She indicated she provoked him prior to the attack in their joint press conference earlier. But with all that impressive and imposing testosterone in the room, what choice did she have but to beg you for a reduced suspension for Ray?
The NFL has turned it back on retired players by doing everything they could to prevent having to pay for decent retirement or health care. The NFLPA does not even claim to represent the interests of retired players. Now the NFL has turned its back on women. I would not be surprised if a woman’s rights group would picket the Ravens home games this year. It is a sad day when a league that pretends to care so much about breast cancer allows players to knock their women out cold. The Rice Principle indicates the NFL refuses to punish the players involved.
That is what I think. Tell us what you think by commenting here or tweeting me @NNRonDSN.
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Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He edits http://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and a non-fiction work at http://www.merriam-press.com/. Follow him on twitter @NNRonDSN to get the schedule of Special News, Notes and Rumors broadcasts. You can hear the previous shows on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/ and the live show Mondays at 6 PM Eastern time on .
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