2014-09-11

What do we learn, how much can we achive?

As most of you noticed, the NFL was recently caught up in yet another gruesome domestic violence case. Ray Rice was released by the Ravens and suspended indefinitely by the NFL, only after a second video of him beating his then fiancee unconscious was released this Monday.

Now, the NFL and the Ravens have handled this situation as badly as they can. The team supported Rice all the way up until Monday, and is now trying to cover up the embarassing level of support they gave him. The NFL has - too little, too late - admitted after the second video turned up that their initial 2-Game suspension was wrong, but questions remain whether they had access to that video already when they handed down the 2-game ban.

What's worse, a lot of football outlets, media writers and fans still talk about domestic violence in a defending fashion, using strategies that shift the focus away from the systemic nature of the problem. There's victim blaming for instance happening at the biggest of sports media. There a forums and facebook pages making opinion polls, as if domestic violence is a opinion one can vote on. There's people claiming it's self-defense, and people saying it's only an isolated incident, even though Panthers DE Greg Hardy was convicted in July for assaulting his girlfriend and throwing her onto a pile of guns. No suspension by the NFL so far, even though they now have a "zero tolerance" policy against domestic abuse. 49er Ray McDonald and Cowboys owner Jerry Jones are other recent high profile cases where the NFL and most of the public is decidedly quiet.

NFL rates of domestic violence and sexual offense are way higher than the national average, and yet the league, self-proclaimed as a shining beacon of American morals, hands downs suspensions for such cases that pale in comparison for instance to non-violent (and non-sexist) drug-offenses.

Outside the NFL, things are not much better. The US still has a huge problem in that area. Some 24 people - - mostly women - - per minute are victims of rape, physical violence or stalking by an intimate partner in the United States. And it won't get better by belittling it in the Football world, where so many (especially young) people get their inspiration from.

So, if your interested for more information on that topic, you can read great articles on the Rice case here, here and here. More so, there are good resources to find out more about domestic violence (and what one can do to help) here and here. The better informed we are, the better we can help shift discussions of such incidents towards a solution instead of defending the status quo.

But reading and talking ain't all. As a platform for football fans, RedZoneAction.org strongly rejects any misogynistic statements defending domestic violence, but we can do more than that. Therefore, for the next 4 weeks we will donate 10 $ from every purchase of a 12 months Supporter Account to Equality Now, a well-established NGO fighting against domestic violence and sexual abuse.

Thank you for your attention and support!

Thanks to wiesengrund for coming up with it, and collecting resources

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