Applaud Yourselves For Potentially Ruining Janay and Ray Rice’s Marriage (Opinion)

by JESSIE KARANGU

Can we talk?

I want to start this article by giving you a warning. Most of you who read this will not like or agree with my opinion.

Now since that is out of the way, let me say this: The conviction and sentencing of Ray Rice by social media, TMZ and ESPN was one of the most gruesome, horrifying debacles I have ever seen in my lifetime.

But you know what was worse? The excruciating pain that Janay Rice was forced to feel as she re-lived a low point in her relationship with the man she loves over and over and over again. It was a demoralizing, dreadful and despicable ordeal which we should all be ashamed of.

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Obviously, without question, what Rice did inside of a casino elevator on that fateful February night was wrong. President Obama said it best when he said, “hitting a woman is not something a real man does.”

But since when did it become the public’s job to determine how a man and a woman’s private problems should be solved? Why do you think you have a right to be involved in Ray and Janay Rice’s marriage?

Many observers of the situation are furious with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell because he only dished out a 2-game suspension. While I agree that the suspension could’ve been longer, based on the facts at hand, a 2-game suspension was the only thing that made sense.

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The NFL had previously never set a precedent for how long a player was supposed to be suspended after being involved with a domestic violence dispute (Since then, the league has instituted a 6-game ban for the first offense and a lifetime ban for the second offense).

The prosecutor in Rice’s case accepted him into an intervention program which would require him to seek counseling and clear him of his charges in six months. And to top it all off according to SI’s Peter King, Janay Rice pleaded with the commissioner in a “moving and apparently convincing case” that this was a “one-time event.”

If Rice’s prosecutor and his wife were satisfied that he understood how detrimental his actions were, isn’t that all that matters?

Ray Rice
Ray Rice

The public’s outrage towards Ray Rice reached its tipping point on Monday when video of Ray Rice knocking out his wife was released by TMZ. On Sunday September 7th before the video was leaked, Ray Rice knocked out his wife in an elevator just as on Monday September 8th after the video leaked, Ray Rice knocked out his wife in an elevator. None of the facts in the situation changed.

The only difference is that for the first time we saw what actually happened. My question to everyone who is outraged is if you’re so passionate about Ray Rice, who avoided trial and settled his differences with his wife; where is your passion about Greg Hardy, a Panthers defensive end who was FOUND GUILTY of assaulting his former girlfriend and threatened to KILL HER.

Ray and Janay Rice get a hug from Janay’s father

Where is your passion about Ray McDonald, a 49ers defensive lineman who was arrested and charged with felony domestic violence after allegedly beating up his pregnant fiancé? By the way, in McDonald’s case, this is the second time police have been involved in a domestic dispute between him and his fiancé.

But since we don’t have video of either incident, I guess they can stay in the league and continue to play without consequence. None of the analysts on television will call for them to be banned from the league because it’s not the trendy thing to do. How hypocritical and pathetic.

The most important question here though is as the public made Ray Rice a scapegoat for domestic violence, how many people thought of Janay Rice?

How many people thought that by continuously bringing up this subject you’re hurting Janay more than you’re helping? How many people realized that taking away Ray Rice’s income changes their financial situation, their ability to help and support their family and the dynamics of their marriage?

It’s sad that the public chose to ruin a man’s career because they were thinking with their hearts and not with their brains.

Of course what Ray Rice did was wrong and pathetic. Of course as a father, a brother or a son; you should be moved in some way after seeing that video because you would never want something like that to happen to a woman you love.

But the beauty of the United States of America is that everyone is treated fairly and given their due process. Once a punishment has been served, no matter what evidence is presented afterwards, that individual gets a second chance at proving that they are indeed a worthy and valuable citizen of society.

Before Chris Brown assaulted Rihanna, he was the happy-go-lucky music sensation that everyone loved. Afterwards, he become a villain of society and was never given the chance to move on from his mistakes. These two pictures, side-by-side, show the transformation Brown went through as societal pressures increased in his life.

Instead, everyone from social media to TMZ to ESPN etc. has demonized Ray Rice to the point that they’ve built a demon. Rice may have avoided jail but the public has trapped him in a prison of guilt which could forever result in a lifetime of bitterness and unhappiness. If you don’t believe me, just look at Chris Brown.

Once again I’ll ask, why do you think you have a right to be involved in Ray and Janay Rice’s marriage?

Photos courtesy of Google Images

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415 thoughts on “Applaud Yourselves For Potentially Ruining Janay and Ray Rice’s Marriage (Opinion)”

  1. You know, the last domestic violence case that got this much media attention was OJ Simpson, maybe we just found out before it was too late, before another Nicole? I think that’s what everybody should concentrate on, screw the football side of it for now…when I saw the video, first thing I thought about was that this was NOT the first time this happened…..any normal woman, for this to be the first time, would have freaked out when she came too….and the look on Ray’s face, should explain the whole thing….his wife is seeing, for the first time unless she actually viewed the video beforehand, seeing what Ray did while she was knocked out….this has happened before…that’s what is scary, perhaps they need to correct that problem before letting Ray return to the field…he could be the next OJ….I wonder how many of OJ’s close friends expected the scenario?

    1. so he was suppose to leave his wife in the elevator unconscious listen to yourself, bottom line there cant be a double standard if he is banned then the other players named need to be banned too point blank period

  2. The public did have a right to be involved in a video of a public figure that went public!! That’s what I don’t think you get. This man is paid a very hefty salary to be a public figure as are most professional athletes and yes, the bar is higher. And yes, all of those other instances should be dealt with as harshly, but especially if their acts of violence and bad behavior go public because they are in the public eye and the public (yes, the fans) pay for those salaries. You want to live a private life? Then do so. You are not dragged into professional sports or the public eye – you go there willingly to make the big bucks and with that comes a responsibility. You don’t want it? No problem. Go get a regular job like the rest of us schmo’s and do what you want to do. It really is that simple. There’s a higher bar. You don’t want to reach for it – your choice. But if you decide to, then I have a right, yes, a right, to judge you on whether you are worthy of it, whether I want my kids idolizing you, watching you, learning from you. The public eye is a harsh world, but you asked to be in it – we didn’t force you! So put on your big boy pants and measure up or get out!!

      1. There are a lot of comments here that are on point. There is no denying the logistics pertaining to the right or wrong of the action. However, this is first and foremost, a criminal matter. Ray Rice went through the process, and at the correction stage, he was diverted to a counseling program. Corrections is the key word here, as in correcting one’s behavior. The criminal justice system’s goal should be to rehabilitate, not simply punish. The greatest good for the greatest number of people is to reform individuals that can be reformed. If our system acts as a system of revenenge, then after the convicted has served his time, without treatment he returns to society as the same person or worse than when he left it. This usually means that another member of society is at risk to become that person’s victim too. It is in our best interest as a society to treat, not just punish. A person has to ask himself, how does taking Ray Rice’s job, changing his life and family dynamics, make society safer in the end? The systems ultimate goal is to reduce criminal conduct in order to increase public safety. From what I have seen on television, this has not been the goal. Instead the goal appears to be satisfaction political agenda’s and to exact revenge. At the end of the day, this correctional philosophy is more likely to impede Ray Rice’s efforts to change, than to aid them.

  3. I had never heard of Ray Rice before the storm broke over his abuse of his wife. No reason that I should I live in the UK and he is an american ‘sportsman’, something I have less than zero interest in. What I will say though is that if you are a ‘public figure’ who acts out your abuse in public then you deserve every condemnation. I must say I have little sympathy or respect for a woman who stands up for her abuser. I recently retired after 30 years as a cop and have seen far too many women trapped in abusive relationships to have sympathy for a women who has all the resources necessary to protect herself and her children from her violent thug of a husband.

    It is unlikely that this was the first instance of abuse in their relationship and it is unlikely to be the last! Oh and your comment about Rice losing his income doesn’t hold water in any part of the real world. This is a man who earned more in a month than most people earn in a lifetime. I doubt they will be fighting to keep the wolf from the door

  4. This was not private it was caught on Tape in a public elevator, NOT in their home. It became public knowledge when he decided to let his temper get the best of him in an Public elevator. He wasn’t even smart enough to realize there might be a camera in there for the safety of citizens. So don’t give the readers your sappy story about staying out of the lives of others, perhaps we would if this hadn’t taken place in a PUBLIC Elevator smh…..

  5. Your opinion is asinine, for one I am sure the public would rather see anyone convicted or caught committing domestic violence to be shunned by the media, but the relevancy and facts are usually the media boasts only about news that can infuriate the public. Personally I call for McDonald to spend part of his life behind bars…as well as Chris Brown. Although Chris Brown didn’t make excuses like Jayne and Ray for the actions he committed. Brown didn’t expect to be reaculmated into the public, he was embarrassed and went to anger management before attempting to get back into our “graces” but let’s be honest no one trusts that he is a completely changed man. The Rice couple and you are acting like it is the media and the public to blame for Ray Rice’ actions. He’s to blame, if he can’t shut up and accept the consequences of his actions than he seriously is not a real man. I personally don’t care about a marriage to a couple who are so afraid to lose their millions that they are begging the world to forgive a barbaric action. Domestic violence is wrong and anyone who commits it deserves their consequences, I don’t care how famous they are.

    1. Rayna Smith according to your logic then, all of the sins, mistakes, whatever you have made in your life, should also be held against you until the day you are no longer on this earth (condemnation)…..you don’t believe in grace/mercy for others, then no grace/mercy you should receive.

  6. Well the point you most definitely proved is that the NFL is a fucking joke organization. Actually disgusting. And those athletes… the same. I can’t with that whole organization thinking they can do whatever the fuck they wanna do above the law and get away with it. Its a disgrace to the American citizens.

  7. Not our fault the bitch chose to stay with that brute rather than leave him after the first offense. She is so desperate for attention she will do ANYTHING for It.

  8. This article is simply foolish. You can be sure I will never read anything else you write. I don’t see how anyone can attack the general public for taking a stand against domestic violence. You have laced your article with an “I agree” here and there but the moral of your story is. We (the public) are ruining their marriage because he is beating her up! Should we (the public), ignore just how hard he hits her? He is a man that my son would look up to, because my son sees him playing ball every week. He is supposed to be representing what an upstanding man is all about. Now I have to explain to my son, that the “Public Figure” standing before him is a coward who beats his wife. And his wife is typical of any victim saying stating “he loves me” “he loves me”. But we all can see him knocking her out and not caring enough to pick her up off of the floor. Now you tell me..Is this a marriage worth saving???

  9. Your issue is with the Ravens not the public. The Ravens are who let Ray go. The public is free to express their opinions about whatever the issue is, and let’s face it, they couldn’t have done this without the help of the media and the police publishing the tape. Your issue is with the Ravens, the police and the media. All of those examples that are listed in your article are just ridiculous. I’m sure they happened in different states that have different laws concerning domestic violence and the teams are different as well. It is sad that Janay had to relive this subject, and I can sympathize there, but not when you’re not making the accused responsible for their part. Maybe you should have wrote this article back when all of those other players commuted their crimes and then Ray wouldn’t be in this situation. The only person responsible for this situation is Ray Rice. What was handed to him was a result of HIS action, not the public.

  10. OK, Ray Rice drew back and punched his wife or girlfriend (whatever she is to him) in the face and knocks her out cold in the casino elevator which by the way is a public place and knowing they have cameras and it is the publics fault….NOT….Plain and simple, he is a grown man and knows right from wrong and I strongly believe this is not the first time this has happened. Public did not do this to him, he did it to himself . What goes around comes around and I truly believe that. If Mr. Rice and his companion do not want the public to know their business I strongly advise to keep their doings tightly behind close doors but I have a feeling she just may not walk away from this next time, it will be a bad ending and their poor child will be left with no parents.

  11. I guess I’m in the minority. There marriage is not my business, I don’t know what is best for strangers. Maybe I too have low self esteem, because I wont judge a situation without all of the facts. I’m not that b self righteous. A 3 minute video of an argument doesn’t define a relationship of ten years. Most of you are going to condemn me, but if I were Janay I would tell you all to kiss my “grits.” I won’t condone their actions and I won’t condemn them either.

  12. I would so love to learn about the context about 2-3 months before and after this incident but even then… I STILL MIGHT NOT KNOW THE REAL PICTURE!!! WAKE UP MORONS! Hello narcissistic morons but most people like to HIDE their flaws. So I would say that Ray was trying to hide any scant trace of domestic instability from the press… duh. I think that most people have a point at which they will snap… Do not and will not know if this was at play in that elevator. But really don’t we all owe it to everyone to at least CHECK THIS OUT???? I could name so many NFL “greats” who were TOTAL asses to their loved ones? Shall we start retroactively suspending them????

    1. And I’m not apologizing for him. I think his behavior was disgusting. BUT. Look at what he stood for before. WTF? It does not add up. so either he was a fraud in total or we are hypocrites. I’ll frankly go with the latter. I hate what this has done for sports, football, the Ravens, and most Definitely the damage that this has done to their marriage( I wish him and his wife the very best!) Hopefully they can rebuild after this debacle.

  13. Thus argument has some string and pretty valid points but lacks some thought. Just because other people committed the same if not worse crimes and were not punished for it does not mean that rice should be handed a pass. What he did was utterly disturbing and regardless of the video or not, the NFL should have handled this much more better. I am a die hard football fan and I am also a woman. For years ongoing now I have felt that several NFL players have been given a slap on the wrist when it comes to the handling of all sorts of crimes. It is inexcusable and it’s time for some changes. Men who do these kinds of things should not be promoted on national television.
    Now to your point about their marriage. This is going to sound cold, but unfortunately this is how famous people live their lives. Once you open yourself to the public eye you must be prepared to deal with either praise or ridicule. No one is telling them to separate and no one is telling Mrs. Rice to end ger marriage or to no longer back her husband. However, it was her decision to make it seem that domestic violence is ok. As a society it is our choice to either denounce or agree with her point of view. Sadly for her most people think that domestic violence should never be tolerated.
    At the end of this I just hope that society as a whole begins to pay more attention to these kinds of initiatives and that people as a whole begin to think of what messages we a re sending out with our actions and choice of words.

  14. That was not domestic abuse, an attack, or anything like that. It was 2 ppl that were both drunk and in the heat of a passionate verbal fight of some sort. Since there is no audio, we really don’t know the whole story. He could have told her “back up” or “leave me alone” or “don’t hit me and spit on me”! What we do know is that they squared off in the elevator and ray took a step back and then janay charged forward. In an enclosed space, there was nowhere to run, so he could not walk away as so many have suggested. So when u have a wildly drunk aggressive person attacking u, the natural fight reflex kicks in which is coded in on a genetic level. She could have dug her fingers into his eyes and gouged them out or kneed him in the balls, or crushed his throat! All those things can take place in a split second. In a court of law I’m quite sure that the aggressor is the one who charges forward, not the person who takes a step back. She took it to the physical level. She had a choice! She is the smaller weaker person, and a normal thought should have been, “this guy can fuck me up, don’t do it”. That’s what runs thru my head before I get into it with someone way bigger. No one places and responsibility or accountability on the female ever. Before ray was forced to react to a crazy drunk charging woman, she had a choice to come at him or not to. She chose wrong and got laid out. She could have not attacked him. She could have not spit at him. She could have walked away. She could have not forgave him and married him. All kinds of choices she made. Bad one IMO. So will anyone here admit that she made plenty of mistakes too and should be held accountable?

  15. I love that this article is expressing my exact feelings on this. We making a big deal out of this for nothing. Yes he was wrong but what about the other NFL players involved in domestic violence why haven’t they lost their careers, they should be thrown under the bus too. Oh i forgot they aren’t black and werent caught on tape. Y’all need to leave this family alone, she a grown ass women who can choose for her self, she doesn’t need the world sticking their nose in to punish him. Besides don’t we still have the issue of michael brown, trayvon martin, and all the other young black men who have been wrongfully killed at hand. But most of the people who mad at the NFL for this ray rice issue haven’t even protest on the behalf of Trayvon Martin or Michael Brown but you mad at ray rice. They tried to send a message to the public right after this got out by getting married. But y’all ain’t see it. Let’s move on from this plz.

  16. There are many things that can be said about these two, but it’s simple: when you become a public figure, such as a NFL player; which is always in risk of scrutinization by the public eye, you just don’t make mistakes like the one these two have made. We didn’t potentially ruin their marriage. They did it to themselves by allowing themselves to behave that way, especially in public. Now they have to suffer whatever consequences come from their OWN actions. I could never behave like that as a mother, father. teacher, banker, police officer, or any other profession without being indicted with risk of losing my career..why should a member of a nationally known Leaugue suffer any less than I? I’m sorry that they must go through this because it’s hard, even if they actually love each other after he knocked her out cold and dragged her out of an elevator (which sounds stupid saying that out loud, and actually puts women’s rights against domestic violence back several years), but, again, Ray and Janay Rice put themselves in the situation they’re in now. We had nothing to do with those idiots.

  17. This is the issue I have with the world, we are all quick to past judgement on each other , but are any of us perfect? Some of you have done things you are not proud of, the only difference your dirty laundry is not aired. Goes to show you how crazy the world is, when the video came out with Solange and Jay Z the public critics made fun of him because he didn’t fight back. So many videos were made making fun of the situation. Now you have a man who hits a women and it’s off with their heads. Yeeeessssss, the hit was brutal and he should be punished, but who are we to sit here and past judgement as if our shit don’t stank. Just ask yourself where would you be without your second chance regardless the situation????

  18. How come the “alleged victim” has not been arrested yet for some type of conspiracy-charge as she was the ultimate reason for the assault to begin with. People quickly forget that the reason for most batterings is brought on by the alleged victim, and that person should be held accountable just as an offender should be held accountable for their despicable crimes.

  19. The reason I care, and the reason I feel we should all care is twofold. 1. Like it or not, NFL players are role models for our children. We watch football together, we play football together, and kids look up to football players as examples and models of behavioral norms. I care even if ray’s wife is willing to forgive, because it sends the message that that behavior is forgivable. Without all the media scrutiny, and public outrage that followed, children and some adults for that matter, are likely to see that as something with little or no serious impact on ones life. Based on the video, ray and his girlfriend/wife have been there before. Knowing the psychological consequences of abuse, the cycle is rarely broken with forgiveness, an apology, and a slap on the wrist punishment. She is a classic battered woman. Instantly defensive of the man that quite nearly killed her. One random snap in the wrong direction and at best she is quadriplegic.
    2. The mere fact that the full video was known to the NFL, and NFL leadership felt a two game suspension was adequate, is a disgusting study in deception of the public and misdirection for the sake of the almighty dollar. Although it would be nearly impossible to hurt the NFL or the Ravens in the pocket book with the suspension of one player, the NFL felt it necessary to evade full disclosure to the general public(those that actually pay the bill for the NFL to exist) and give an almost meaningless punishment to a man who disgraces the plight of abused women everywhere…..including his own wife. In so doing, the NFL likewise cheapens and insulted the truly horrific experience of a woman imprisoned by physical and psychological abuse. We as fans will get over it, and a suitable punishment could have been dealt and served, and treatment, therapy blah blah blah. But it wasn’t. And honesty with “us” was not forthcoming. That erodes trust. Trust between the fans and the organizations of the ravens and the NFL. Trust takes a long time to build, and an instant to destroy.

    THOSE are my reasons. And although you make some valid points regarding the hippocracy of decision making at the executive levels of the NFL, your conclusion that the rest of us are wrong to be angry and have a say I feel is misguided. Clearly, the NFL must get better at expecting high standards of behavior from their players. And I for one would be overjoyed to see Ray and Janay fix this broken part of their lives, and spend the energy to jump through hoops and prove it to the public. At this point, I even feel they are obligated to do so.

    1. Them working on their problems is a better message to our children then just losing job..you can make a mistake and learn from it and send a message to men in that type of relationship to get help if you really love your wife and want it ro work out..losing your job only hurts the wife and child more.

  20. I have been . Echoing this same oopinion. You are one point 100%..TMZ ESPN are just as abusive to Janay as her husband was that night…they invaded their privacy and forcing them to relive a traumatic event in their lives and trying to use their short comings to push am agenda regaredless of how much it cost them emotionally. ..they should be the ones to share their story with the world if they deem it necessary.

  21. I like how if someone has the guts to say this the majority of people commenting agree. But when the article is the reverse everyone agrees with that so it APPEARS that’s what the public wants.

    That’s why we shouldn’t put any faith in social media it’s manipulative at best and doesn’t show the true public outcry.

    I also think it’s stupid of obama to say “any guy who hits a woman isn’t a man” or what ever. That has nothing to do with being a man. NO ONE should hit anyone. Why generalize it and make it sexist. No woman should hit a woman no man should hit a man no woman should hit a man………..

    But it happens. No need to stereotype it and say someones not a man for hitting a woman. there are women out there who can knock some men on their asses. Some women deserve it. If they want to hit a man he has the RIGHT to defend himself with out social bias.

    1. I love your comment. .we say we want equality and we want to play inthe NFL amd MBA….now we say treat us different …no one should be treated like that..if verbal turns to physical ..you need take a step back and deal with the issues that are causes frustration and breakdown of communication in your relationship. .get help if you want to save it…I love Obama but he was dead wrong and signing bills on equality. ..it works both ways ..equal. pay, equal ass whipping. .lol

  22. Taking away his income will present a financial situation? That’s a stretch. He was a professional football player. Those guys get payed more than we could ever imagine. I think he’ll be fine for a while.

  23. Well said. These self righteous people are a joke. Especially some of these women who will talk crap about rice and then shake their backsides to rap artists that degrade them. Spare me the self righteous rhetoric.

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