Video footage of Ray Rice stone cold KOing his then-fiancee, now-wife Janay Palmer in an elevator finally came out, reassuring what we already knew: Rice punched Palmer, Palmer was knocked unconscious and Rice dragged Palmer’s limp body off the elevator floor and partially into the lobby.
Or rather, it should have reassured what we already knew.
Somehow when I woke up this morning a curious thing was happening: everyone was outraged. As the TMZ video was passing through social media like a brush fire, more and more people were acting like they believed Palmer had knocked herself out. For those of us with a pulse who have been following the story, one thing was clear, that Rice had hit her with enough blunt force to have caused the loss of consciousness and it was as simple as a case of domestic abuse and straight up battery.
What’s disturbing is that society, and also seemingly the NFL, is either oblivious to the reality and gravity of the situation, or, collectively decided to remain ignorant to the fact that ‘A’ never directly equals “C’, and that there is always a ‘B’ component to the equation. In this case it was Rice’s left fist. It’s equally appalling to know that in this day and age, with the amount of information readily available at the push of a button, that people can blissfully continue living in constant contradiction between their internal and external beliefs. Externally most condemn domestic abuse, offering faint, empty words and promises that carry no weight or meaning, effectively keeping up with society’s trending status quo. Yet, internally, few desire enough details about a specific case, Rice’s in particular, that could potentially lower the belief in the goodness of man.
It’s why today’s viral video has hit so hard: it filled in a gap we didn’t want filled. We can’t look away anymore. We can’t pretend that she just drunkenly fell down. The truth is ugly and it was there all along but today it is unavoidable.
Yet, while today seems so negative with the release of this video, there are positives emerging. Those in positions of power, i.e. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and Baltimore Raven Owner Stephen J. Bisciotti, now appear even more cowardly and rightfully on the wrong side of history. They undoubtedly had seen the footage we are all now seeing and yet had done the minimum, only maneuvering to try and save face. Now any and all actions moving forward will be made from a public relations standpoint and should be viewed as such. To me, the NFL and Ravens have lost all credibility when it comes to hard hitting issues. But the sad thing is: will society commend them for their impending actions, continuing the vicious cycle of contradiction and ignorance or stand up and demand better?
UPDATE (1:50 PM CST): The Baltimore Ravens have now cut Ray Rice and the NFL has indefinitely suspended him, leaving Rice to apply for reinstatement. Again, these are PR measures that should have taken a long time ago.
Opinions? Leave a comment below or tweet me @Kevin_Jackman16