Yesterday (three posts down), we began a Conversation on Race™ by noting that not only were Ray Rice and Adrian Peterson, the two most notorious abusers in the NFL today (against stiff competition), African American—so were their defenders. We learned, and shared, that “whooping” a four year old child with a “switch” (the leaves from which were stuffed in the child’s mouth) was commonplace in the black community (at least in the South). Like “baking a pie”.
Ray McDonald and Chris Cook of the San Francsico 49ers, Tony McDaniel and Kevin Williams of the Seattle Seahawks, Brandon Marshall and Santonio Holmes of the Chicago Bears, Greg Hardy of the Carolina Panthers, Dez Bryant of the Dallas Cowboys, Erik Walden of the Indianapolis Colts, Donte Whitner of the Cleveland Browns, Randy Starks of the Miami Dolphins and Frostee Rucker of the Arizona Cardinals have all been arrested for domestic violence or related charges since 2005, according to a USA Today database that tracks players’ arrests since 2000.
I wasn’t sure, so I checked: all 12 are black men. In a league that is roughly 60% black, how can 100% of the domestic abusers be black? As a New England Patriots fan, I remember Christian Peter, a serial abuser who was white—and of course Aaron Hernandez, a Hispanic gang-banger who played professional football on the side. Where are the four or five white guys in this list? These are just numbers. They don’t tell a story.
[T]here are a large number of people who don’t think Adrian Peterson did anything wrong at all, including fellow NFL players (both retired and active):
Keith Bulluck: Adrian Peterson might go to jail for whoop’n his son? Oh ok…
Darnell Dockett: I got a ass whippn at 5 with a switch that’s lasted about 40mins and couldn’t sit for 2days. It’s was all love though. Times have changed!
Mark Ingram: When I was kid I got so many whoopins I can’t even count! I love both my parents, they just wanted me to be the best human possible!
I have no comment on their upbringing. But did they see the pictures of Adrian Peterson’s son? Have they read the reports? That wasn’t discipline; it was fetishistic abuse. And why are all three black men?
NBC NFL analyst Tony Dungy joined the show to talk about Week 2 in the NFL and to share is opinion on charges against Vikings running back Adrian Peterson. Dungy said that he believes it remains to be seen whether what Peterson did was abuse and Dungy noted that he grew up with that kind of discipline in his home.
I admit I’m jumping back and forth between domestic abuse and child abuse, but can you blame me? That’s the news. What I’m trying to get at in this Conversation on Race™ is what I’m often trying to get at: the violence committed against black people by black people—from inner-city crime to abortion—is appalling. If it is to end, and it must end, we first need to talk about it. Thanks for listening.