By Jordan Williams
On Monday September 8, 2014 the NFL started a week it never wants to relive. A video taped a few months earlier surfaced of Ray Rice, the starting running back for the Baltimore Ravens, very aggressively hitting his then fiancée Janay Parker in the face, and knocking her unconscious. The NFL had lied about what they had previously saw and tried to cover their tracks quickly about the video before Americans began spectating about the incident. The NFL thinking it had already closed this issue didn’t know what was coming their way.
On July 24, 2014 Rice was suspended from two games for this incident. Following the news of the suspension there was major out lash from Americans, especially females. There was no way the suspension could only be two games for such a severe crime. Roger Goodell the commissioner of the NFL had to come up with an answer and something quick. On August 28, the NFL and Goodell admits to “missteps,” and announced a new domestic abuse policy. Any player that is convicted of domestic abuse for the first offense is suspended for 6 games, the second conviction is now a lifetime ban from the NFL. And with these moves, Goodell feels like he has escaped a major conflict in the NFL.
On September 8, 2014 a video of the Ray Rice incident surfaced and it is even more brutal than the initial video released. This video shows the complete incident of Rice hitting and knocking Parker unconscious and then drags her limp body out of the elevator. Shortly following the video being released by TMZ, the Baltimore Ravens release Ray Rice from the team. After Ray Rice is released from the Ravens news is broke that the NFL has suspended him indefinitely, has been given no timetable for return.
After Rice’s suspension from the Ravens and NFL statements were starting to come out starting from his head coach, Jim Harbaugh. Harbaugh on September 8th said this is the first time the Ravens have seen the gruesome video. The next day the NFL released a statement keeping its innocence and agreeing with Harbaugh saying that they have never seen the video until now. It didn’t take long for more evidence to start arising.
On September 10, 2014 the Associated Press released a news report that indeed the NFL did receive the video of event, but also received the video back in April. As the NFL begins to see some dark days coming their way and so did commissioner Goodell. Multiple woman’s advocacy did many things to try and get Goodell to resign. First the National Organization for Women or NOW wrote him a letter asking for the NFL to have a zero-tolerance policy for domestic violence. Next Goodell had the women’s advocacy group Ultraviolet flying planes over NFL games on Sunday September 14, 2014 with banners reading: “#GoodellMustGo.” This was just part of the week the NFL endured, they also had the story of Adrian Peterson, considered a top tier running back in the NFL, being charged with reckless or negligent injury to a child. Until next time.