October isn't just a month of pink everywhere for breast cancer — people raising awareness about domestic violence don purple clothes and accessories to keep the issue at the forefront of everyone's mind.
William Gay, cornerback for Pittsburgh Steelers, has personally been greatly affected by domestic violence. Nearly two decades ago, the football player’s mother was shot and killed by her husband. In memory of his mother and in order to stand up for the cause, Gay recently sported purple Nike cleats.
Naturally, his footwear attracted people’s attention and, of course, the NFL’s — which later slapped a $5,797 fine on Gay for a uniform code violation. This is not even the first time this has happened with Gay as last year, around the same time, the football player was threatened with a fine for wearing purple cleats, but this did not stop him from standing up for the issue again.
The NFL has had a number of its players involved in domestic abuse cases. Most notably, in 2014, Ray Rice was charged after a video of him knocking out his girlfriend in an elevator surfaced. Even though the football player was suspended for a while, NFL took a long time to acknowledge the incident, and take appropriate disciplinary action.
Yet, for someone like Gay, who is standing up against abuse, the NFL was quite quick to act.
This just goes to show how appallingly distorted the NFL’s approach toward the problem is.
Gay is standing up for what he did, and says that he doesn’t mind paying a fine for something he truly believes in and wants to educate people about. "We get fined for other negative reasons. I'd rather get fined for that: a positive reason,” he said.
Well said. Meanwhile, we have to wonder why even though the NFL has had so many players embroiled in domestic violence cases, it's more willing to punish players actually fighting against the issue.