As a sports fan and as a competitive athlete (note — I didn’t say good!), I’ve been following the firestorm which was ignited this week regarding the NFL and it’s leader Goodell. I’ve also been married for over four decades to a women who specialized as a psychological therapist in helping women who were sexually or physically abused. My insights to this ugly aspect of “being a man” is somewhat unique.
As a compeitor for many years, I understand the necessity of aggressiveness in high-level sports. Yet, I also saw the ugly side of having to be macho to prove yourself. Becasue of my wife, I’ve learned how trapped women become in these situations and end up dealing with Hobsonian choices.
Thus, I hope the NFL gets it right. Violence against women, in all its forms, is insidious and I’m constantly surprised of how young men are willing to accept that behavior. Whether Goodell goes or not, is not as important as for this extremely wealthy and high profile organization to take a stand on ANY mis-behavior of its athletes/coaches. Integrity is important in any endeavor and the NFL has an opportunity to take a true leadership position. I hope they get it right because young men need to understand that this type of behavior – in any form – is despicable.