How many times will the NFL turn it’s head when it comes to domestic violence?
I write this article while still in shock that it took till now for Josh Brown to be relieved of his position on the NY Giants team when he was arrested for domestic violence in May of 2015. The NFL stated after they re-signed him in April 2016, “Based on the facts and circumstances that we were aware of at that time, we were comfortable with our decision to re-sign him. Nothing has happened in the meantime to make us question that decision.”
The NFL will argue that the charges were later dropped after Josh Brown’s arrest, but I can’t help but question why more investigation was not done? And in the 2016 Pro Bowl incident, where Molly Brown had to be hidden from Josh in a different hotel room, why wasn’t someone from the NFL taking this seriously?
Why does it take until the abuser admits to his wrongdoing for the NFL to take action? And what about the other players on the team who no doubt knew what was going on? Where is the will and compassion to reach out and protect those who cannot protect themselves? It sickens me to think of how many NY Giants players must have seen the way Josh was treating his wife and they did nothing to help her.
So many people mistakenly think that because a woman stays in an abusive relationship that the abuse must not be that bad. I say that they could not even begin to imagine what the victim is going through and to stop assuming and start questioning.
Abusers use power and control to intimidate their victims into powerlessness. They control everything and they use fear to keep their victims from speaking up or stepping up for their human rights.
This whole situation highlights how much needs to change in this society around domestic violence. We need to bring back honor and courage. We need to stand for the weak and powerless. We need to not turn our head and start listening to our intuition and start asking victims, how can I help you?
I know firsthand how victims cover up the truth for their survival, there is no doubt that this is why the charges were dropped after Josh Brown was arrested in May 2015.
When I was almost killed by my abuser, he convinced me to drop my charges too. I not only feared what he would do if I upheld the charges, but my relentless compassion for him made me not want to destroy his life. His control over me was powerful. Though I did not go back to him after the incident, he stalked me and I had to move to an unknown location to be safe.
I can only imagine how many times Molly Brown may have wanted to stand up for herself and find the help she needed but simply couldn’t because of fear and shame.
I urge NFL players everywhere to be men of honor. If you sense or witness that women or children are being abused by your fellow players, stand up and be the men that we need you to be. Be the men that boys everywhere are looking up to be a hero and a model for how they should be.
It is clear the NFL will not be the ones standing up for victims, so it is time for the community to stand up and make it clear that domestic violence will no longer be tolerated.