I’m the last person to hit up tabloids for the latest gossip on the lives of my favorite athletes. I am fine with whatever they are doing as long as it’s not hurting others. That is my philosophy toward just about everybody.
In what is now a regular occurrence though, I hear about guys like Greg Hardy or Ray Rice in the news for the wrong reasons. The things these men have done are obviously unacceptable in civilian life, like threatening loved ones or abusing children, so why they are okay in the world of entertainment leaves me confused.
For example, there is no way Jerry Jones, the owner of the Dallas Cowboys, can turn the one-year, $11.3 million contract signing with convicted abuser Greg Hardy into a positive based on morals. Even his daughter, a member of the NFL’s conduct committee, supported the signing. I don’t know what appalls me more, however, the fact that they are banking on the idea that everyone will forget or just stop caring that Hardy has done the things he has, or the fact that people most likely will forget or stop caring.
In case you are unfamiliar with Greg Hardy and his past transgressions, here is a little refresher. According to his former girlfriend, Nicole Holder, Hardy snapped one day and threw her around his bathroom. He then pulled her by her hair and started screaming at her that he was going to kill her and break her bones.
She also said that he dragged her into the bedroom and choked her with both hands before throwing her on a couch covered in assault rifles and shotguns that he bragged were loaded and could be used to kill her. Finally, she said that he called in his assistant to help him throw her out of his apartment where she ran to the closest police station. Officers reported that she was covered in visible bruises and marks.
Hardy appealed and Holder could not be found when she was supposed to appear in court. Many sources believe that she took money from him in a secret deal rather than face the long process of a trial. Since she was unable to assist in the proceedings, the domestic violence charges were eventually dropped on Feb. 9.
If that’s the type of person someone wants on their favorite football team, their priorities need some guidance. As a diehard sports fan, I unfortunately think my opinion is less popular than it should be.
Over the course of the last football season domestic violence was finally given some attention thanks to TMZ, of all outlets, releasing security footage of Ray Rice knocking out his then-fiancÃ©e, Janay Palmer, in an elevator. I have heard many well-respected people both in the media and in my personal life downgrade such acts because “he’s important to the team” or “she shouldn’t have started it.”
I love sports, but they will never take precedence for me over such heinous crimes. I hope I come off as rational and sincere, rather than perched on a pedestal, because this is something I’ve given a lot of thought and feel very passionately about. Rewarding someone with millions of dollars for being a criminal just doesn’t add up to me.