Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice has received what some are calling a slap on the wrist from the National Football League: a two-game suspension as punishment for the domestic violence incident between his then-fiancee and now-wife, Janay Palmer.
It’s alleged that Rice punched Palmer in the face in an Atlantic City, N.J., casino in February. Surveillance video captured Rice dragging Palmer out of an elevator, and it looked as though she was unconscious. Rice pleaded not guilty to an aggravated assault charge. He also avoided trial after being accepted into a pretrial intervention program.
In May Rice apologized to his teammates and Ravens management for his behavior:
Rice is scheduled to miss two weeks’ pay and will also be fined an additional check. Currently, Rice’s weekly salary breaks down to $235,294 during the regular season.
As you acknowledged during our meeting, your conduct was unquestionably inconsistent with league polices and the standard of behavior required of everyone who is part of the NFL. … We simply cannot tolerate conduct that endangers others or reflects negatively on our game. This is particularly true with respect to domestic violence and other forms of violence against women.
Not everyone agrees with the paltry punishment. Most feel that a heftier suspension and fine should have been applied, especially since there have been NFL players who received bigger fines for lesser atrocities.
Below is just a sample of what people think about the NFL commissioner’s decision:
So there you have it, folks: In the NFL, weed smoking is a definite no-no; domestic violence, not so much.
Yesha Callahan is editor of The Grapevine and a staff writer at The Root. Follow her on Twitter.