NFL Player Introductions to Include Criminal Records?
September 29, 2014
For those of you that don’t know me well, I’m a huge fan of the National Football League. I’ve had the misfortune of growing up as a Cleveland Browns fan and, well it’s kind of stuck with me. Put on a game with any two teams and I’m glued to the TV for four hours.
You don’t have to be a football fan to know that the league is facing an unprecedented and well-deserved amount of negative publicity over the criminal transgressions of some of its players; none more ugly than domestic abuse charges against now-former Baltimore Raven, Ray Rice, Carolina Panther Greg Hardy and Minnesota Viking Adrian Peterson.
I’ve wanted to write a blog post for weeks about the Ray Rice situation; primarily because the pre-trial diversion program that he entered into with the courts will expunge any criminal record he would have faced if he was convicted. Now of course, Rice will forever be remembered for these actions, but if this was your average guy, an employment background check wouldn’t reveal this violent crime. Call me crazy, but this is exactly the kind of information that an employer would want to know before hiring someone.
While this behavior is no laughing matter, Saturday Night Live parodied what the starting lineup announcements would look like on TV if the players just volunteered their criminal convictions at the beginning of each game. Somewhere the EEOC is preparing a class action suit against the NFL, because they believe the players should only reveal this information after you’ve watched part of the game to determine if you really like the person or not.