White House Urges NFL to “Gain Control Of The Situation”
Things are getting out of hand for the NFL within the first week of the season, TMZsports released a graphic video of running back Ray Rice punching his wife in an elevator and leading to his indefinite suspension from the league. (Rice is currently appealing the decision)
Within in a few weeks, the total number of players currently facing domestic violence or child abuse charges and have been deactivated or suspended from the NFL has grown to six according to USA Today’s “NFL Players Arrests” tracker. The latest being Arizona Cardinal’s player Jonathan Dwyer who head butted & punched his wife resulting in a fracture, in July, for refusing his sexual advances.
A week after the Ray Rice video release, Vikings running back Adrian Peterson was indicted on child abuse charges, for which he turned himself into authorities and has been placed on the exempt lease while he sorts out the legal issues. Peterson lost his 2-year son when the boyfriend of his child’s mother murdered him last year. So, it was a bit unnerving to hear of his charges and to see the extent of the child’s injuries from a switch.
A judge found Panthers defensive end Greg Hardy guilty of a domestic violence incident, however he’s appealing the ruling and currently awaiting a jury trial. Then there is San Francisco 49er defensive tackle Ray McDonald who was arrested on an accusation of felony domestic violence just three days after NFL Commission Goodell created the league’s new policy against domestic violence. Although he was arrested no charges have been filed, so no team nor league disciplinary action has been taken.
New York Jets practice squad player Quincy Enunwa was arrested on September 4 for simple assault, a woman told police that Enunwa pulled her off of a bed at a hotel resulting in a head injury. He pleased not guilty and is still practicing with the team.
A White House official via CBS News had this to say about the current climate:
“The NFL has an obligation not only to their fans but to the American people to properly discipline anyone involved in domestic violence or child abuse and more broadly, gain control of the situation,” a White House official said.
“Many of these professional athletes are marketed as role models to young people and so their behavior does have the potential to influence these young people, and it’s one of the many reasons it’s important that the league get a handle on this and have a zero tolerance.”
Why is the White House commenting? Well, it may have something to do with the upcoming launch of their sexual assault campaign “Its On Us”. They definitely want to be seen as being on the side of the ‘good guys’.