Posted by Ally Hinton
The NFL is in the social media spotlight again but not for the reasons they would like to be. Baltimore Ravens running back, Ray Rice, previously had received a two week suspension for a domestic violence incident involving his then fiancee, Janay Palmer. Rice was arrested on assault charges following a February 15th altercation in New Jersey in which he had allegedly struck Palmer so hard that he had knocked her unconscious in an elevator.
After his menial punishment was handed down from the NFL people took to social media to relay their dismay and anger over the two week suspension. Many compared the incident with that of another player for the Browns, Josh Gordon, that was suspended for an entire year for smoking marijuana.
While the NFL did not extend Rice’s suspension all of the negative feedback has made them reconsider their policies on domestic violence. Weeks after the incident Roger Goodell, Commissioner of the NFL, revealed a new domestic violence policy.
Six games for a first offense. A lifetime ban for the second.
This week, months after the abuse, the tape of the altercation between Rice & Palmer was released on TMZ’s Sports website. In the video, as seen below, Rice and Palmer can be seen having a small argument outside in the hall. They step into the elevator and Rice swings at Palmer. She races towards him and he punches her before she falls into the floor, knocked out cold. He can then be seen trying to drag her limp body out of the elevator. Security shows up a few moments later as she lies face down on the floor. He tries to revive her over and over again. She barely moves.
The release of this horrific tape brought this issued statement from the NFL, which claims they had not seen the video previously:
“We requested from law enforcement any and all information about the incident, including the video from inside the elevator. That video was not made available to us and no one in our office has seen it until today,” the NFL said in its statement.
Goodell says that now that he has viewed the new evidence in the Ray Rice case he admitted that he “didn’t get it right” with Rice and that he has decided to triple his original suspension adding five more games on top of the game that he missed Sunday in the opening NFL season weekend.
“In business and in life, we look to get better as we moved forward,” Amy Trask, the former Oakland Raiders CEO, told USA TODAY Sports. “Just because it wasn’t in place before, isn’t it great that it is now? People should step back and say we have a chance to do it better. That’s what Roger has done.”
Although Rice has avoided any type of incarceration for the abuse, the Ray Rice case just goes to show how important social media has become in giving the everyday person a voice. If complaints from fans can change an organization that is as big as the National Football League we can only imagine how much effect social media can have on smaller, more intimate corporations.
The Baltimore Ravens have just announced that they have cut Ray Rice from their NFL team after the release of the video of him knocking out his now wife. Rice has also been suspended from the National Football League, indefinitely. The fans have spoken their distaste for the player all over social media and the NFL is listening.