As a dog returneth to his vomit, so a fool returneth to his folly. Proverbs 26:11 (KJV)
The media is abuzz with the Ray Rice story. Unless you were under a rock during the last week or so, what happened was that Baltimore Ravens running back, Ray Rice was caught on videotape beating on his then fiancee, Janay Rice in an Atlantic City elevator back in February. Since that revelation hit the airwaves, the Ravens cancelled Rice’s contract. I’ve seen clips of the video myself on the news and find it disturbing.
However outraged people may be, there are those who still defend Rice and his actions. One is Janay Rice herself. The other is boxing champion Floyd Mayweather. Plus, it’s came to light that the NFL knew about this video before we saw it for ourselves. Plus, there are still women who will probably defend Rice; and will watch the game.
Don’t get me wrong-I do love some football. However I see a bigger issue at hand. Many of us in the US of A have turned sports celebrities like Rice into almost “gods”-especially in football. Rice was not the first NFL player accused of domestic violence, or any major criminal infraction. For years, we’ve condoned such behavior-especially if the player was a star player. We didn’t mind our sports leagues giving our stars a suspension-just as long as it wasn’t forever and our star can get back to playing and entertaining us. And when such players were fattening the NFL-and owners’-bottom line, no one gave a damn.
This stems from the age-old culture of violence that pervades this nation. We have devolved from “Make Love, Not War” to “Make War, Not Love.” If you watch an NFL game, you see it open with the singing of the National Anthem in tribute to our military
serving fighting overseas. Plus, we tack on the Fundaglical (Fundamentalist Evangelical) element to the game (players “thanking God” for a touchdown and the endless “John 3:16” placards). This same idiocy has metastasized into our overall culture to the point that we don’t give a damn about what Rice did anymore.
Until we as a culture change and bring a more peaceful and holy attitude back to the table, this violent shit like what Ray Rice did will not change. Until we change and embrace, “Make Love, Not War” we will still embrace violence in all its forms. Until we change and stop deifying these athletes-even tacking Fundagelical X-tianity to them, we’ll still have more of this. Until we change. stop “supporting our troops” as killers, and instead support them as people who need to have a quality of life upon returning home; we’ll still support whatever violence done overseas.
Tomorrow will be the 11th Anniversary of the “9/11” terrorist attacks here in America. We’ll have our “never forget” signs, our memorials, our tributes, etc. However, we need to understand that it’s our culture of violence here in America-and abroad-that ultimately produced the backlash that brought about September 11, 2001. And despite that dark time in our history, we Americans have not changed. And like Fido in tonight’s Scripture text, we keep going back to the vomit, the folly, of violence; with no change in sight.
Until WE change, nothing will change. We’ll have more Ray Rice’s who we’ll forgive-and forget-as we let them entertain us on the field.