Keith Olbermann continued to hammer the NFL on its treatment of Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice, blasting the league Monday for it’s rationale in handing Rice a two-game suspension.
The NFL suspended Rice after he was charged with assaulting his then fiancee (now wife) in an Atlantic City elevator in February. Rice agreed to enter a pretrial intervention program to avoid jail time. On Monday, the NFL’s senior VP of Labor Policy, Adolpho Birch, went on ESPN radio to defend against the league’s suspension, saying in part, “I think it is absolutely clear to all involved that the NFL does not condone domestic violence in any way and will not tolerate it in our league. I don’t know how you can reach a conclusion other than that.”
Olbermann picked Birch’s argument apart Monday, citing the fact that the NFL had the power to do more and didn’t, leaned on the legal system’s lack of a major punishment in crafting its own, and is under the assumption that they actually did well with the discipline.
“Mr. Birch also admitted that commissioner Goodell is not listening to the public at all,” said Olbermann. “You, women: you’re wrong. And you men, and you fans and non-fans: you’re wrong. And the rest of America: you’re wrong.”
Olbermann also questioned the ethics of a meeting Goodell conducted with Rice and his fiancee that may have “poisoned” the well of evidence in the case.
“Anyone with any experience of domestic violence knows that the easiest way to supress the truth is to force the victim to tell her story in the presence of her attacker,” said Olbermann. “It’s why there are laws in all kinds of assault cases preventing such hearings.