♦ When What Happens in Vegas, Doesn’t Always Stay There…♦
“Rape is the only crime in which the victim becomes the accused.”
DETROIT— Now you would think that I would be sorta numb to this whole “Professional Athlete gets accused of (insert crime here) by (insert accuser here)” thing, and you would be right to a certain extent. I just couldn’t imagine being paid obscene amounts of the green to play a sport, stay in shape, and stay out of trouble, yet being unable to hold up to the latter: “You mean all I have to do is show up to practice and on game day, and not get arrested and I get paid HOW MUCH!? I don’t know about y’all, but I gotta get this money!” When you look at the cast of characters in the NFL alone that have found themselves on the wrong side of a mug shot in the last five years, you could conceivably have an NFL criminal to cover every position on a football field. Yes, even the Punter and Kicker!
Starting with current players, the obvious usual suspects leap out at you: Michael Vick (Tax Evasion/Dog Fighting/Drugs), Donte Stallworth (DUI/Manslaughter), Travis Henry (Drug Trafficking/Child Support/Serial Procreation), Marshawn Lynch (Gun Charges), Charles Rogers (Marijuana/Domestic Abuse), Plaxico Burress (Gun Charges), and basically anyone who plays for the Cincinnati Bengals not named Carson Palmer. Lest we forget some of the legends: Michael Irvin (Cocaine and lots of it), Todd Marinovich (Heroin), Leonard Little (DUI/Manslaughter), Lawrence Taylor (Cocaine), Nate Newton (Marijuana Trafficking…as in 300 lbs of it) and the all-time greats Rae Carruth (Murder of his Pregnant Girlfriend), Lawrence Phillips (Assaults of, well, whoever got in front of him), and O.J. Simpson (Acquitted of Double Murder, Convicted of Armed Robbery and Kidnapping).
In the pantheon of NFL criminality (and to a larger extent, athlete criminality), those are the biggest of the big. And while crime stretches out over all sports, the NFL is the biggest sport in the United States by a country mile so their shit stinks just a little more. That’s not to say we forgot about the myriad of drug charges, child support issues, and domestic abuse cases that pervade the NBA, the multitude of DUIs and drug issues that Major League Baseball has had, and let’s not even get into the insanity that goes on at college campuses.
However, the latest case of an NFL player running into a potential firestorm is one that isn’t as easy to call as the others. Ben Roethlisberger, the two-time Super Bowl winning quarterback of the Pittsburgh Steelers, has been accused of going all Kobe Bryant on a hotel employee in Las Vegas last July. Andrea McNulty, whose name has been disclosed since she only filed a civil suit, accuses Roethlisberger of luring her into his hotel room at the Harrah’s Hotel and Casino to fix a malfunctioning TV before forcing himself upon her, and eventually raping her. McNulty says that she never filed a criminal complaint against Roethlisberger because she feared that she would be fired if she did. She has also since indirectly accused her employers of actually telling her to be honored by the encounter.
Three major issues creep into play here:
The overall portrayal of the accused in these two cases is curious. Kobe’s accuser was portrayed as an innocent young woman taken advantage of by an arrogant monster. Ben’s accuser is being portrayed as a money-hungry bitch with a vivid imagination trying to smear this guy’s good name. That’s not to say she isn’t, but the agenda is already being set. The rush to judgement is on the accuser, rather than the accused, and that’s awfully peculiar. For what it’s worth, I am highly skeptical about this. It took her a year to say something. She didn’t go to police. No rape kit was ever given. She still refuses to file a criminal complaint, and if her co-workers supposedly knew about this, you’d have though one of them would’ve actually had a conscience and said something on her behalf. I’m not saying she’s lying, but if her nose is made out of wood, you might want to start giving her three feet.
Sexual assault is one of the most heinous crimes in our society, only eclipsed by Child Molestation and Murder. It is NEVER cool for a man to take advantage of a woman (or vice versa). When she says no, then that’s it Pimpin’! Lying about sexual assault not only makes you look like lying scum-bucket, but it makes life far more difficult on the real victims of rape and sexual assault. Rape isn’t as much about sexual pleasure as it is about physical dominance, and robbing the victim of control. Roethlisberger is a hell of a QB. If he did this, he needs to be put away for a LONG time. If he didn’t, Anna McNulty just raped a countless number of women by her actions. Godspeed and Stay Tuned.
Thank You For Your Time, Take Care, God Bless, Always Dare to Be Different, and G.O.M.A.B.
Until Next Time…Behave Yourselves and Be Safe.