Monday, September 29, 2014

It Should Never Be Ok

The signs were always there if you looked.  No one wanted to believe it though. He was a public figure. He was an integral part of the team and they really wanted to win. 
Then it happened.

He exploded and put his hands on her.  The sides were drawn.  Some were horrified but he still had many supporters.  He even had a prominent media person come out in support of him.  It was not his fault he said, he was attacked. She charged him! What was he supposed to do?  

 An investigation followed and led to no charges.  Which meant in his supporters minds, he did nothing wrong.  Complete Vindication his teammates said.   A person of privilege got away with yet another crime said others.  While we were arguing the severity and consequences of his actions, his coworker was scared to be at work alone with him so they had to come up with an alternative safety plan   She goes to work in fear, while we move on to the next news story in our 24/7 news cycle.   

 No it is not a story about the Ray Rice and the NFL’s poor handling of the situation.  It is much closer to home.   For those who need a refresher course, it is a story of Wisconsin’s very own Supreme Court Justice David Prosser.   The story had so many of the same qualities, it was hard to distinguish between the two.  

 There were definite differences, race, standing, quantity of teams, etc… but the similarities were overwhelming. .. Then something happened.  We had it on video.  Actual video of the actual assault.  She charged him, he retaliated.  The day before the video came out, I knew that Ray Rice was suspended because he knocked his then fiancé out when they were in an elevator.  I did not need to see the video to know what happened.  I had a pretty good idea and we all knew the end result anyway.  However the video did come out and national outrage ensued. It was even so strong, that the NFL was forced via public pressure, to make his suspension for a minimum of the year. 

All because we had a video!  

However, the same person who rushed to the defense of Justice Prosser, by writing an article using suspicious sources, now  wrote an article saying that there is no excuse for violence against women and we do not need a video to know that.

 Overlooking the blatant hypocrisy, I see a much larger problem.   We hold our professional athletes to a higher standard than we do our politicians.   When an athlete gets suspended for a year(since reduced) for smoking pot, while a congressman can get away with cocaine posession.   

Let that one sink in for a moment.  

Some will look at the disparities and see race.  I think race is a part of it but a larger problem is we have a win at all costs attitude.   I am willing to overlook the cracks in my windows but will gladly throw stones at your glass house the minute you do something wrong.    

 The first step in ending our divisiveness and start fixing our country, is to hold our own team accountable.  

We need to be able to say, I do not care if we agree on everything, violence against women,  blatant lies, cheating people, etc… is not ok.  

Before the silly season of a major election, truly kicks in, let’s take a long look in the mirror.  

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