Mike Williams Fine Clearly Demonstrates NFL Priorities

At a time when the commissioner of the NFL is the laughingstock of not just the sports world, but throughout a large segment of the non-sports world as well, where the NFL’s long-standing avoidance of any semblance of a true comprehension of the pervasive problem of domestic violence that is inherent in the brutal psyche of significant numbers of players, and where their half-hearted standard of punishment has been rightly ridiculed across the country and around the world, the league still enforces with overblown fines some of the most asinine rules of any billion-dollar organization.

Before getting to the specifics of such rules and fines that are at the top of the list for NFL

enforcement, let's review a few other NFL facts, policies, and past actions, which have in most instances been discussed here in the past:
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1. There is no need now to list all of the active players who have been arrested, charged with, or convicted of some type of domestic abuse, other than to say that they run the gamut from star player to journeyman, or to described the after-the-fact, cover-your-ass proclamations and rules revisions the league has made in response to the outrage elicited among the public;

2. It has come to light among fans that the NFL, an association of billionaires that regulates, negotiates, and accumulates vast financial resources for its member owners, is an IRS-certified NON-PROFIT that pays no state or federal income taxes, yet has sufficient income itself to pay its commissioner alone the sum of $44 Million per year in salary and benefits;

3. In a major public relations move, last year the league giddily announced a settlement of a massive lawsuit brought by more than 4,500 former players who had suffered permanent injuries due to concussions received while playing, alleging that the NFL had downplayed, dismissed, and covered up the long-term neurological harm associated with football-induced concussions. The league bent over backwards to congratulate itself in agreeing to settle the current and future claims for the total and final sum of $765 Million. That sum would fund medical care and compensation for all players so injured up to now, and for the next 65 years. However, the settlement requires court approval, and now, a year later, that settlement is in doubt, as hundreds of players have realized how easy the league would be getting off and how insufficient that amount of money would be to care for and compensation so many players, for so long a time, and the court has put off

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approval pending further evaluation and information. One analysis of the settlement figure determined that a former player at 60 years of age and with less than five years in the league who suffers from debilitating dementia would receive no more than a net recovery of $375,000.

4. Years ago, the NFL chose to be self-insured for any and all Workers' Compensation claims brought by injured players, rather than acquiring insurance to cover such claims, thus saving the cost of yearly premiums, but then having to administer such claims and pay
benefits on its own. The NFL got tired of such costs, and a couple of years ago began a million-dollar lobbying effort in California, the state where Workers’ Compensation laws were most amenable for injured players to bring such claims, if they played in games in California during their careers. By paying out a few million, the league was able to convince California legislators to change Workers’ Compensation laws, and now, as a result of this effort, the vast majority of claims for disability and medical care brought by injured payers who had no other recourse or benefits available to them, are now prohibited. The league will save hundreds of millions of dollars, or more, in the future, as disabled players, the majority of whom did not earn substantial salaries, are on welfare and other types of public benefits, and are in some cases, homeless.

So, that is the NFL, pinch every last penny while denying benefits to injured players, and keep those felons on the field. So what is the NFL interested in enforcing with a no-tolerance policy? Why the color of a player’s socks, that’s what. It was announced this past week that the league had fined Buffalo BIlls receiver Mike Williams the sum of $11,025.00, for wearing a different color socks than his teammates. What a crime!

This is the league that has captured the fancy of America with its violence and cold-blooded heart.

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