By Milena Romano and Tyra Carter
Several Jamesville-Dewitt High School students have weighed on the recent violence in the National Football League, especially incidents with NFL players Ray Rice and Adrian Peterson. Amongst the J-DHS community there are variations of responses as to what happened, why it happened, and what’s necessary.
The issue that started the controversy was when NFL running back Ray Rice knocked out his wife Janay Palmer in an elevator in the Revel Hotel and Casino on Feb. 14. The next day Rice was arrested for third-degree aggravated assault. Footage of Rice knocking out Palmer was released to the public and to the NFL by TMZ on Feb 19. Rice was released from the Baltimore Ravens and suspended from the NFL for two games. on Sept. 8. Before the TMZ elevator tape was released and went public, 21 out of 21 J-DHS students and staff agreed that Rice was a great athlete and a good person. I think Rice was a really good person, and a really good NFL player said freshman Takuya LaClair. Students had conflicting opinions on why Rice’s now-wife is still with him. “She wants his money, and wants to be married to an NFL player,” said J-DHS freshman Benjamin Fleet. However science teacher, Mr. Rich Adler said, “She knows him better then we do, and she might know that is something that he might not do again or wouldn’t normally do. Maybe her love is giving him the benefit of the doubt.”
Rice was suspended from the Ravens and suspended indefinitely from the NFL. J-DHS students and staff have differing viewpoints on the subject. Of the 21 interviewees, 12 believed that the players deserved the consequences that they got. “Kick ‘em off!” said senior Ben Vahey. The rest of the interviewees believed that the players should not have been kicked off, or gotten less consequences than they received. “No, I think he learned his lesson from all the bad media consequences,” said freshman Liam Coyle.
On May 18, 2014 NFL running back Adrian Peterson whipped his 4-year-old son, Tyrese Robert Ruffin, with a switch, a short branch. Peterson left numerous bruises on his child’s back, legs, arms, and buttocks, according to SB Nation . Peterson said this was punishment for pushing his brother off a video game. Peterson is scheduled for trial in 2015. J-DHS students and staff believed that Adrian Peterson was a great athlete and a great role model for kids before the photographs of his beaten child hit the media. “I loved Peterson, he was one of my favorite players.” said freshman, Evan Allen.
Freshman Kasey McDonough believes that it's not about the NFL, but the people that have been brought into the NFL. “I think it's their backrounds and where they came from, or the money,” said freshman Kasey McDonough. Freshman Sarina Alexander thought that because NFL football players went to college for sports, they may not have focused on work and therefore they had a lack of education. Spanish teacher, Mrs. Simone Pacilio, said that the NFL players take their aggression off the field and bring it home which could cause the domestic violence among family members.