Hypocrisy. It’s the only word that accurately describes the National Football League and how it is run.
A couple weeks ago league officials voiced concern over the integrity of their game as rumors swirled about whether or not the New England Patriots cheated in the AFC title game in what has become known as Defaltegate. Somehow, the offices of Roger Goodell and the NFL have failed to realize there is no integrity in the NFL, just hypocrisy.
In the last year, we have watched the NFL botch their investigation of Ray Rice punching his then fiancé in the face and then go on to lie about what exactly they knew before handing down a two-game suspension. To top it off, they had the great idea to have a legal firm they do regular business with to handle an “independent” investigation and think the public would buy the results. And this was all for just one incident. Toss in the names of Adrian Petersen, Ray McDonald, and Aldon Smith and you end up with a league of criminal misfits receiving anything but consistency when it comes to discipline.
However, we can rest at ease knowing the NFL will send in their uniform police to levy fines on players who do not wear their game uniforms according to the league’s standards. Fines for socks worn too low or too high, shirts left untucked, or messages written with sharpies on a taped body part are among the fines collected each week by the league offices.
Then there are the fines handed out a few days after games have been played to players for hits the office say were illegal even though they were never penalized during the game. They hand out fines for not talking to the press, for talking negatively about the job the officials did to the press, and for their end zone celebrations that go too far.
This brings us to Crotchgate. It seems Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch has a thing for his crotch. He has become the Michael Jackson of the NFL because he is known to grab his crotch after he scores a touchdown. The NFL frowns on this kind of display, and I can’t blame them, and fines Lynch each time he does this to the tune of 20 thousand dollars. It should also be noted that Lynch has been fined for refusing to talk to the media — and was even threatened with being suspended from the team’s NFC championship game if he showed up wearing non-league approved gold shoes. To anyone who has been the parent of a toddler, this all seems ridiculous and easily solved with some good old fashioned parenting, but I guess the NFL does not know how to do this either.
Here is where the hypocrisy of the NFL kicks in. The league claims grabbing the crotch is not conducive to running a family-friendly league and sets a bad example to all the kids who tune into watch. However, the NFL has no problem selling commemorative Seattle Seahawks framed sets of photos in which one of the photos shows Marshawn Lynch grabbing his crotch. The league will gladly sell it to you for a mere $150.00 plus tax and shipping so you can display it in your family-friendly home.
The NFL does not have to worry about the integrity of their game, not when they are guided by their own hypocrisy. You see, the NFL has long decided they are guided by their profits and nothing else.
This is the same league that wants its fans to think the NFL is a giant supporter in the fight against breast cancer. Each October, they love to remind us of it by having their players and coaches wear pink NFL accessories that are not allowed during the other months of the season. The league then pushes the sale of pink NFL game jerseys, wristbands, towels, and team hats with the public thinking the money is going toward fighting breast cancer. Meanwhile, the NFL keeps 90 percent of the cut while donating a paltry 10 percent toward breast cancer.
Integrity? Who does this sort of thing and claim to be concerned about the integrity of their game when a little air is let out of some footballs? Mark my words, after the NFL is finished with another botched investigation, they will sell the eleven under-inflated footballs for hundreds of thousands of dollars a pop to help inflate their profit margin.
The NFL does not have an integrity issue. Roger Goodell has seen fit to make sure his office and the league’s owners have tossed out whatever was left of their integrity before the season began.
What the NFL does have is a hypocrisy issue and there is only one way to rid itself of it. The league’s owners have to fire Roger Goodell and find a new commissioner if they have any desire to restore integrity to the game. However, thanks to their massive profits, there is no reason for owners to can Goodell because, as we all know, money helps hypocrites sleep better at night than a clear conscience.
Jim is a life long resident of California and retired school teacher with 30 years in public education. Jim earned his BA in History from CSU Chico in 1981 and his MA in Education from Azusa Pacific University in 1994. He is also the author of Teaching The Teacher: Lessons Learned From Teaching. Jim considers himself an equal opportunity pain in the ass to any political party, group, or individual who looks to profit off of hypocrisy. When he is not pointing out the conflicting words and actions of our leaders, the NFL commissioner, or humans in general, he can be found riding his bike for hours on end while pondering his next article. Jim recently moved to Camarillo, CA after being convinced to join the witness protection program.