Why Women Should Be Furious About Deflategate
Disclaimer: I am a Boston girl/New Englander, born and bred. I am a Patriots fan, and I like Tom Brady (I honestly don’t understand how someone could NOT like him, but that’s a different post). I enjoy football, even though my relationship with sports is complicated as I am also a feminist.
I am mad as hell about the Tom Brady suspension.
And it has nothing at all to do with whether or not he cheated.
What I’m mad about is what Twitter noticed mere moments after the decision to suspend Brady for four games for allegedly deflating footballs during championship game during the 2014 season.
Brady’s suspension is two games MORE than that of Ray Rice, who was caught on videotape beating his fiancée brutally in an elevator.
The Executive VP of Football Operations, Troy Vincent, had this to say to Tom: “Your actions... clearly constitute conduct detrimental to the integrity and public confidence in the game of professional football”
I am almost speechless, but also have too much to say.
Roger Goodell, Troy Vincent, and all those involved in this decision have to answer to all of us. Does Brady’s unconfirmed involvement in a “scandal” that most quarterbacks in the league perpetrate mean more to them than women’s bodies? Are their efforts to “combat domestic violence” truly an empty gesture, like many have critiqued? What on earth is going on at the NFL?
Besides the clear lack of understanding that this decision would be a PR disaster, there’s an apparent prioritizing of “ethics” here. What this decision says is that the NFL values just about everything over the lives and safety of women. I have no way of understanding it.
And for those crying out, “but Brady brought into question the integrity of the game! The incident with Rice was outside of football!” I honestly don’t know what to say to you. We idolize and worship our athletes. And if you don’t see domestic violence in the life of a celebrity as a problem that bleeds into the locker room and the game and the endorsements and the Hall of Fame, then I'm left speechless. The integrity of the game is damaged by those who damage the bodies of the ones they love with malicious intent and anger, and that’s what Rice did.
If our bodies mean nothing to the NFL, maybe withholding our dollars is the next step. Let’s stop buying, let’s stop watching, let’s stop participating until Goodell resigns. I for one cannot go back to the TV when pre-season starts to feed an industry that so clearly values all else over me.
If women stopped buying, stopped watching, stopped playing fantasy football, what would happen? Women make up almost half of all football fans. Our consumer power needs to be exercised. It may be time for a good old-fashioned NFL boycott.
What a shame . . . I really wanted to see Jimmy G play.
How to cite this page
Diamant, Emilia. "Why Women Should Be Furious About Deflategate ." 12 May 2015. Jewish Women's Archive. (Viewed on July 21, 2018) <https://jwa.org/blog/why-women-should-be-furious-about-deflategate>.