Better East Texas: NFL's punishment for domestic violence inadeq - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Better East Texas: NFL's punishment for domestic violence inadequate

(KLTV) - Perhaps you have seen the fuzzy cell phone video of pro football player Ray Rice dragging his unconscious fiancé from a casino elevator.  Her body is limp and she is obviously unconscious. 

Rice evidently struck her and knocked her out in the elevator.  There is more to the story, but the end result is that Ray Rice hit his fiancé and knocked her out – a tragedy in itself.

An additional tragedy is the anemic punishment handed out by Rice’s employer – the NFL – which has a personal conduct clause in players’ contracts.  Rice will endure a two -game suspension for his actions.  If you test positive for smoking marijuana as a pro football player, you can face a 16 game suspension, as is the case with a Cleveland Browns player.  So does anyone see the hypocrisy here, that a man can knock out a woman and get essentially a slap on the wrist while another man uses a drug that is legal in several states and faces a punishment 8 times harsher? 

The NFL needs to revise its punishment scale for crimes like this, no doubt, but the league has continued to defend the punishment as adequate.  Rice’s head coach and a league official have both downplayed the event and essentially blown it off.  This is a tragedy - a double tragedy - and the NFL needs to step up and address this with harsher punishment and treatment for domestic violence cases like this.  Ray Rice needs help and he needs to feel punishment that deters this behavior in the future. It is most likely the only message he will understand.

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