April 18, 2010

Being a Misogynist, Predatory Asshole isn't Just Immoral, it's Bad for Business

I'm hesitant to indulge my desire to celebrate the ugly public fall of Ben Roethlisberger, simply because there are players on every team (including the Seahawks) that have done despicable, sometimes illegal, things to women. Violence against women is a systemic problem in our society, not just among dickbag Pittsburgh quarterbacks.

Admittedly, no one would call me a typical guy, but I would hope even the most enthusiastic Girls Gone Wild fan or frequent Hooters patron would agree with this: It's simply never justified to physically assault your significant other, and it's never ok to pump booze down another human being's throat so you can have sex with them.

These seem like non-controversial notions, but NFL players from Warren Moon to Leroy Hill, from Brandon Marshall to Big Ben, seem to have trouble adhering to the basic standards of human decency. The behavior isn't new, but the NFL doling out punishment for it certainly is... Even without charges being filed, Roethlisberger faces a multi-game suspension. Why? It's not just out of a desire to strike a blow in the struggle against misogyny.

Like most of these things, the motivation is straight cash, homie. Women comprise a bigger chunk of the NFL's fanbase every year, which means every year they watch more games (and advertisements), buy more tickets, and scoop up more merchandise than they did the previous season. With the sleazy details of Big Ben's behavior now available to the public, Goodell has little choice but to punish the Steelers QB.

Let's not pretend that the NFL is some angelic organization; But at the very least, they clearly want their players to be more discreet about their turdy behavior. Hopefully the punishment for Roethlisberger is severe enough to make other athletes think twice before emulating his sociopathic activity. Remember, guys: No means no, but a girl being too drunk to consent ALSO means no.


Ryan Nickum said...

I hope that on every play Big Ben lines up under center next year he gets booed so loudly, including by his own fans, that it makes him a less effective quarterback. Players of his caliber who display this sort of behavior are tolerated by teams and fans because they win games. But if it the response of fans is so overwhelming that it impacts how the games turn out, I think you'll see teams start to get rid of players like Ben. I look forward to the day the Steelers come to Qwest Field so we can heckle him mercilessly. And when the Steelers play Philly, I hope he gets hit in the groin by a barrage of batteries thrown from the stands.

Neil said...

Big Ben, Joey Porter, heck even Hass...if ANY player is even under reasonable suspicion (which I would define as not yet proven guilty, but far from innocent) of something like this, there should be SEVERE consequences. No one should be rewarded with big bucks and notoriety if they are guilty of something as heinous as this.

Same think for something as dangerous as drunk driving. One time drunk driving = 16 game suspension w/out pay. Twice: banned from the league permanently. Popularity should not nullify bad behavior.

I'm not in favor of the No Fun League, but for serious off field issues like this that put other peoples safety at risk, the consequences should be severe enough for even the thickest skulled player to go "No way man, I'm not going to do that" (smoking weed now and then is one thing, but activities that put peoples lives in danger should have zero tolerance).

bleedshawkblue said...

Even innocent until proven guilty, he laid down enough derelict behavior to warrant a year off.

The phrase Personal Conduct in the Personal Conduct Policy needs to be enforced literally. Being a douche is one thing, but this is classless in the extreme, under the best of circumstances. And she was 20 freakin' years old. Isn't that illegal for her to barhop?

Maybe not in the Solid South...or even Shittsburg, but the Commish has an obligation to the rest of the ticket and merchandise buying world to police his league, otherwise we'll end up being fans of the No consequences for Fuckheaded behavior League.

JRuss said...

You nailed it. Being of the feminine persuasion and a HUGE football fan (and Seahawk maniac), I spend a good deal of money on football-related swag. Players that engage in violent behavior definitely affect our family's buying habits. My husband was considering getting a Hill jersey for this season but after Leroy's latest arrest, we put the brakes on that purchase.

I'd like to think that consequences handed down by the NFL are done simply because it's the right thing to do in response to sleazy, dangerous behavior but I know better. It's all about the almighty dollar, and truthfully, I'm alright with that as long as the tool doing the misbehaving is getting approriately punished.

Where there's smoke, there's fire and Big Ben has been walking around in a smoldering cloud of trouble for some time now. Hope he's suspended for a nice long time.