Ray Rice…Let’s Just Say…He Isn’t A Role Model…


Dearest Readers:

Yes, it is a true…everyone has an opinion about Ray Rice. Of course you must know, I have an opinion too and my opinion is this story is about Domestic Violence…from both sides.

In the TMZ video, I noticed Janay Palmer (his fiancee at the time) slaps Ray. This appears to start the fight BEFORE the fight intensified after the elevator door closes. I imagine this video is edited, after all, many of those broadcasting sites have the tendency to report, and I quote, “If it bleeds…it leads…”

As an advocate against domestic violence of any type, I believe Ray Rice is finally getting what he and his wife deserves! Reportedly, Ray Rice has been suspended from the NFL. President Obama has spoken out about the suspension stating and I quote, “…Stopping domestic violence is something that’s bigger than football, and all of us have a responsibility to put a stop to it…”

I am just a bit annoyed at all of these comments. Domestic violence has been happening within the closed doors (or elevators) for generations. Most people have always looked the other way…! “They don’t want to get involved…besides…it is a family matter!” Why is it suddenly coming to the surface, and finally getting the attention of a President — NOW! Because of football???

It is a known fact that domestic violence INCREASES during football season. Maybe it’s the testosterone that gets a man’s blood rushing thru his body while watching his favorite, and violent sport — football! I certainly had opportunities last night to observe this scenario at a football bar and grill locally. Sitting at the bar with a friend while my husband and her husband watched the game, I looked around the bar area. We were the only women sitting at the bar, so it was just a bit easy to listen to these men as they fought over that silly brown ball. During half-time, the discussion of Ray Rice began, so I listened — not to the TV, but to these testosterone overloaded, booze drinking men. Among the words I heard were:

“She got what she deserved…”
“She put herself in a man’s place…”
“Why is the NFL getting involved with a situation between a man and woman who love each other…”

My Julia Sugarbaker demeanor was steaming!

I looked at one guy speaking with another guy. “She started the fight…did you see her slapping at him? She was asking for it.”

“Excuse me, gentlemen,” I interrupted. My husband shook his head and mumbled something. I suppose I was embarrassing my husband, but I didn’t care. I had a message to deliver:

“You gentlemen keep saying she got what she deserved. After all…
“She put herself in a man’s place… Obviously, you are not educated about domestic abuse. While I agree that she shouldn’t take a swing at him, she did not deserve to be knocked down. And IF you saw the video, you will notice HE did not knock her down within public settings…He waited until the elevator doors closed…and THEN the swinging, pushing, and knocking her around began…This IS what happens with domestic violence…The perpetrator waits until the doors close, and then he goes after his prey!”

The two men glared at me, along with my husband. I am certain my husband was livid that I was speaking, but this was my moment to voice what domestic violence is! Let’s just say, my husband knows that when I feel a passion about issues, I definitely attempt to voice my concerns, AND, I will not go quietly into the night!

I continued. Much to my surprise, these men were not interrupting me! “You also questioned, and I quote, “Why is the NFL getting involved with a situation between a man and woman who LOVE each other…”

“All of you need to understand, domestic violence is not about love. It is about control…jealousy…anger…outrage…never is it LOVE. A man who loves a woman, and a woman who loves a man, will not swing out at each other, slapping, hitting, shouting and knocking the partner to the ground.”

The two men glared at me again, ordering another beer. I cannot imagine why, but they got extremely quiet, choosing to gulp the beers and watch the beloved football game. I hope and pray the team they wanted to win — LOST!

I have no compassion for Ray Rice, and I have a limited compassion about his wife. Never do I understand why she married him, but that is for her to decide, and I imagine within a few years there will probably be a divorce…when she gets the courage to say — Enough is enough.” Perhaps money was a deciding factor???

Nevertheless, I do hope the scenario between the violence of Ray and Jayna Rice will open the eyes to the reality that domestic violence occurs daily in America. While there are laws regarding domestic violence, http://www.mincava.umn.edu/documents/ffc/chapter5/chapter5.html, we need shelters, venues and education pertaining to domestic violence. Unfortunately, the State of South Carolina has the highest rate of domestic violence in the nation. My, ain’t we so proud! This state appears to have the tendency to just slap the good ole boy on the wrist while giving him community service, or a night or two in the jail system. Yes, I live in South Carolina — a state — way behind the times!

As for the Rice Family — It is sad that they have a beautiful little girl. Why? Simple. She will grow up observing her parents fighting, sometimes slapping and knocking each other down. I walked in those shoes. Since I served as a referee between my parents when they fought physically and verbally with shouting and boxing matches I fought to end, and I promised myself at the age of five-years-old that I would not treat my family in such a way. It is horrible to watch your parents fighting, shouting, cursing and demonstrating what Love IS NOT! I pray that this precious child will not have to stand between her parents. One thing I did notice in the environment of our home as a child — whenever my parents were around company or family, never did they shout, curse or fight. All of these actions were behind closed doors with exception of when I was five years of age. On that occasion, my dad knocked my mother to the ground — outside, around other women. The other women simply walked away, never saying a word. As for my actions, I stood next to my dad telling him he was a mean man and I never wanted to see him hit my mother again! Never did I SEE him hit her again, but I did see the bruises!

Children need to grow up in a LOVING home, not a home filled with the monster of domestic violence. Regardless, I will still say, Domestic Violence is not LOVE! Love is gentle and kind…not control or violence!

As for Ray Rice, I pray that soon there will be another news story to broadcast, not another tragic story of domestic abuse. Maybe Ray Rice should join another long line — isn’t it called the unemployment line?

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