I’m putting up to bid two Ray Rice jerseys. One is an authentic on-field jersey (XXL) and the other is a toddler’s, size 2T. The first one cost me $250 (and some justifying to my wife), and the second one was an impromptu purchase in the mall for $25 – I just had to get my little boy one to match his dad’s! They were both worn approximately 32 times over the last 18 months and are in great shape. If you want to see what they look like, I can send you the picture I have on my desk of me and my son smiling broadly as we sport our matching Ray Rice gear.
Honestly, I was proud to have my son decked out with me in the Rice motif. Just check out Rice’s Facebook page. He was a community role model in Baltimore. He was supportive of the youngsters and took strong stands against bullying. His last Facebook post before he went quiet on February 12th was to promote the SPCA’s “March for the Animals.” He has his own foundation, “Ray of Hope.” They even sold wristbands promoting friendship. Ray Rice was the kind of man I wanted my son to look up to.
And then the video came out. Rice dragging his fiancé from an elevator after a domestic scuffle, allegedly after he knocked her unconscious. The police have video showing him knocking her out, and I have two jerseys that I don’t feel right wearing anymore.
Look, I know we all have ugliness in us. I can be short tempered and simply arrogant. I have manipulation down to a science. But Ray Rice has a particularly bad brand of ugliness. His brand of ugly is the strong willing to oppress the weak. It doesn’t matter if she hit him first. She never had a chance against a man who knocks down powerful men for a living.
It doesn’t matter if men are athletes, celebrities, politicians, cops, bosses, husbands, or fathers, because it’s the same issue for all of them: men who take their position of strength or authority and use it to oppress the weak have no courage. What makes a man courageous is when he is willing to recognize his own faults and restrain himself in the face of those faults. I need my little boy to wear the name of a man who has that courage, because there are too many men out there who don’t have it. All Ray Rice needed to do to show he had that courage was to walk away. That’s all he had to do.
Anyway, best offer takes the pair. You can take the picture of me and my son, too.
Written by Matt Haarington
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