Maine Gov. LePage: NFL 'Promoting Murder' by Suspending 'Thug' Ray Rice for Just Two Games
Republican Maine Gov. Paul LePage, who threatened to boycott the NFL over its lenient two-game suspension of Ray Rice for domestic violence, believes the NFL is promoting murder by not giving Rice a harsher penalty.
After arguing last week that Rice should be suspended for three years for domestic violence that was captured on video, LePage, in a Tuesday letter to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, wrote:
Giving a mere two-week suspension to Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice is, quite frankly, unconscionable. The man knocked his fiancee (now wife) unconscious, then dragged her body out of an elevator. In issuing the suspension, you claimed the league must be ‘consistent' when issuing punishments. If that is the ‘punishment' for knocking a woman unconscious, then there is something very wrong with the NFL culture and its policies
He noted that Michael Vick served 21 months in jail for running a dog-fighting rung and the "NFL mandates harsher penalties for players who violate the league's personal-conduct policy or abuse drugs than for those who perpetuate domestic violence."
"This defies common sense," he continued. "Your failure to change the NFL's disciplinary rules is like promoting murder. Have you forgotten the murder-suicide of Steve McNair and Sahel Kazerei? How much violence must NFL players commit before you take action?"
He said that "taking thugs and wife-beaters off the field may be bad for business, but you are playing games with people's lives."
LePage said his father beat him severely until he ran away from home at the age of 11 and "lived homeless on the street for two years."
"Unfortunately, my mother wasn't able to escape the abuse," he said. "I can tell you firsthand that domestic violence is about a perpetrator having power and control over another individual. Too many times, it leads to murder."