Taylor Incident Latest Example That The NFL Must Address Violence Against Women

2010 NFL Draft Round 1

Taylor (right) 2 weeks to the day he was charged with raping a 16 year old girl. (Source: Yardbarker.com)

Hey Addicts, I know this isn’t Chiefs related but it is an article I wrote for the Fansided.com main page and I am pretty proud of it so I wanted to share it with you all.

First it was Ben Roethlisberger.

He is a two time Super Bowl winning QB. He plays the most important position on the field for one of the most well respected and loved professional football teams in America and he is paid millions upon millions of dollars for it. He can go anywhere he wants, whenever he wants and given his fame and fortune, he probably shouldn’t have that hard of a time meeting women.

Of all the places in the world Ben Roethlisberger can spend his evening, he goes to a small college town in Georgia. He brings with him an entourage of friends and bodyguards. He proceeds to take over the back room or “VIP” section a club. He instructs the bodyguards that “only women” are allowed in the back.

Gee, I wonder why?

He proceeds to entertain all the young women wanting to get a look at an NFL QB by buying them round after round of shots. One of those women, who is underage, becomes extremely drunk. According to the alleged victim, Roethliberger then begins making sexual advances toward her. She tells him that they do not need to do this but he tells her it is ok. She rises to get away from him and walks through the first door she sees, which happens to be the women’s bathroom. Roethlisberger follows her in and continues his advances. She again tells him “we don’t need to do this.” He again tells her “it’s ok,” and according to the alleged victim, he proceeds to have sex with her.

This is the second time Big Ben has been accused of rape by a woman. Given how difficult it can be to prove a rape that happens behind closed doors and the excessive drunkenness of the alleged victim, which Roethlisberger facilitated, Ben is not charged.

The NFL has him go to counseling, gives him a talking to and gives him a suspension of 6 games, although it is likely that punishment can be reduced to 4 games, just in time for the Steelers prime time appearances, as long as Ben “cooperates.”

Just days ago, University of Virginia lacrosse player, George Huguely, goes to see his on again off again girlfriend, 22 year old Yeardley Love. Yeardley is on the women’s lacrosse team, which likely how the pair met.

Huguely has been drinking most of the day when he shows up at Love’s apartment. Exactly what happened is not known you see, because Love is now dead.

What we do know is the drunken Huguely entered Love’s home, either forcibly or otherwise, and at some point, Love went into her bedroom and shut the door without letting Hueguely in. We know this because Huguely admitted to police that he kicked in Love’s bedroom door. After entering, Huguely began to shake Love repeatedly, smashing her head against a wall.

Love was found later that night with her eye swollen shut, face down on her bed in a pool of her own blood.

She was dead.

Sometime this week, Hall of Fame Linebacker, New York Giant great, and known abuser of illegal drugs, Lawrence Taylor checked in to a hotel room in upstate New York. Somehow or another, he got himself in contact with a pimp, who brought him a 16 year old runaway who had been living with him for weeks in his Bronx apartment. According to police, the pimp, a Mr. Rasheed Davis, “struck the young girl with his fist, kicked her and brought her to the Holiday Inn against her will.”

Davis then told the victim to have sex with LT. According to the victim, she refused. Then, according to police, Taylor proceeded to rape her and when he was finished, generously pay her $300, which she gave to Davis.

This has got to stop!

It seems as though every time I turn on the television, another women is being sexually abused, assaulted or murdered. The 3 “men” I mentioned above seem to view women not as human beings, but as playthings for their own sick amusement.

This attitude toward women seems to be rampant in sports and honestly, in our society in general. Not a season goes by in the NFL where a player isn’t arrested for assaulting women.

Larry Johnson has been in trouble multiple times. He was busted for throwing women down and spitting a drink in another’s face.

Pittsburgh receiver Santonio Holmes seemed to take a cue from Johnson mere weeks ago when he was accused of throwing an entire drink, glass and all, into the face of a woman in a club, temporarily blinding her.

This kind of behavior is repent in the NFL and the league has absolutely got to step in. This goes beyond having a strict conduct policy. The NFL needs to send a message to the players, their fans and to the world that they will not be a league of thugs, rapists and murderers and that they will have a zero tolerance policy when it comes to violence towards women.

Men are, in general, bigger and stronger than women. NFL players are, in general, bigger and stronger than everyone. What chance does a 16 year old girl have against a former NFL linebacker and a pimp? What chance does a drunk and confused college student have against the biggest quarterback in the NFL (all due respect to Jamarcus Russel but I don’t think he really counts as a QB) and a slew of bodyguards, locked in a bathroom in a club with an owner that would rather not knock on the door to disrupt the big star in his bar, even if a women is getting raped behind it?

Like it or not, the NFL is trotting role models out on the field every week. Young athletes look up to these players. Young men, like George Huguely.

Did the conduct of a man like Roethlisberger have an impact on Huguely? Maybe not.

But it certainly doesn’t help.

Read some of the comments online at the bottom of articles about the Roethlisberger case. Watch as readers call the alleged victim a “drunk slut,” or a “money grubbing whore.”

These words and this attitude toward women are ever present in our society.

If the NFL really wants to protect its shield, they need to take a stand on this Lawrence Taylor issue. If L.T. is found guilty of this crime he should immediately be removed from the hall of fame and his records should be stricken from the books. I know many people will not agree with this. Some folks would like to separate what guys do on the football field and what they do in their personal life. I disagree.

Once you are an NFL player, particularly if you are a successful, Hall of Fame NFL player, you are always an NFL player. You represent the NFL and really, sport in general for the rest of your life. If an ambassador of the game does something horrible, if he assaults or rapes or murders, he should be stricken from the record. He should be blackballed, if not simply to punish them then to honor the young men and women growing up playing or cheering for athletics. They need to do it for Yeardley Love.

If Pete Rose can be banned from baseball for violating the integrity of the game by betting on it, then Lawrence Taylor can certainly be removed from the NFL Hall of Fame for violating the integrity of humanity.

The NFL, one of the biggest and loved corporations in the entire world, has a chance to do a lot of good by putting forth a message that violence against women is absolutely unacceptable, no matter who you are.

I just hope they rise to the challenge.

Topics: Ben Roethlisberger, Lawrence Taylor, Lawrence Taylor Arrested, New York Giants, NFL News, Yardley Love

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