NFL commisioner Roger Goodell has earned respect around the league as a no-nonsense, law and order type guy. Upon his arrival to the position, he immediately established himself as the new sheriff in town by taking action against Michael Vick for brutalizing dogs and suspending Vick for a long time. He dished out harsh punishments for NFL players who violated the personal conduct clause in their contract.
However, apparently there is no penalty for NFL players who engaged in the crime of DWI. Even though, there is a clause that reads: “Conduct that imposes inherent danger to the safety and well being of another person.” as a violation of the policy. During the 2008 NFL season, Goodell permitted New York Giant Offensive Tackle Kareem McKenzie to play in a NFL game immediately following his arrest for DWI. There was no penalty at all for McKenzie. Goodell has a lot on his plate, however he needs to be educated about the enormous problem DWI is in this country and a large part of that problem is that the public still doesn’t treat DWI as a criminal matter, but more like a traffic ticket. Goodell’s lack of interest and action in this area prepeptuates the public’s apathy toward DWI.
There are NFL players who have killed innocent people while committing the crime of DWI and they are currently playing football. Goodell’s brand of justice reflects thinking that an NFL player caught with a little bit of marijuana is a much more serious offense than a player who engages in drunk driving. A player with a second offense for marijuana is automatically dealt a four game suspension that could cost the player millions of dollars.
With the recent DWI arrest of the Detriot Lion’s Nick Fairley, Goodell has another opportunity to right the ship. I urge all those who care about the passive nature in which we as a society treat this plague, to contact Goodell’s office and ask him to explain his lenient attitude toward this criminal offense that is responsible for thousands of deaths every year. You can reach him at this number: (212) 450-2000