Welcome to Mr. Goodell’s National Football League. An entity dedicated to its own self-preservation rather than justice. A revenue, profit-obsessed non-profit with its own puppet media ring, devoted to silencing anyone who dares question the integrity of "The Shield” who will think nothing of making a spectacle of anyone who dares to compromise their fabricated illusions of “integrity."
It is a byproduct of its own making. A vast, encompassing empire that rules with an iron fist. The shadowy hand of discipline, whose metaphorical fist clenches to crush the first sign of anyone who dares to disrespect the game – OUR GAME – by letting a few PSI out of a football but will disappear, silently into their castle when numerous violent acts against women are committed by their stewards, until forced to act by some anonymous citizen journalist with a cameraphone that captures or tweets such incidents for the rest of us to witness.
They have created a world where they enable past and present knights, upon which the backs of this kingdom advanced to engross an entire nation of football-obsessed devotees with their own sweat and blood (and under no guaranteed contracts). Such gallant foot soldiers can no longer remember their children’s names and are suffering from depression, suicide and dementia at staggering rates as a result of their efforts, while the ruler of this dominion stands pat, suppressing any hint of those who would dare suggest that “violence on the field” could tie in with those symptoms, grossly neglecting the blatant observation that in order for his kingdom to grow, it needs to work properly and by doing so, it risks destroying people’s brains. And rather than research the effects of head trauma and CTE in current and past employees, they actively seek to undermine it.
While violent abusers of women and children are allowed to roam the sidelines in tax-payer funded coliseums and sign multi-million dollar contracts, while owners of such gladiators are given the freedom to possess narcotics and extort their own hometowns, while banners fly over the arenas with symbols and mascots that trivialize a genocide, while past stars are indicted and sentenced in brutal murders, the High Council of this monarchy will witness all of this transpire from their crystal, luxury box palaces, happily collecting any levies, tariffs and capital gained in the forms of ticket sales, jerseys, and $15 beer from us, the fans, who abide under the illusions of fictional escapism and fair competition within a system that operates under the realities of anything but fiction and fairness.
In many ways, we are the defining, predictable consequences of the decades long crusade for absolute control by an organization, maddened by their own lust for power, who maneuver with corporeal tools like a chess pieces – a potential double murderer becomes a spokesperson in the form of Ray Lewis, a fraudster in the form of Jimmy Haslam gets rewarded with draft picks and a jet, and a former conference player of the year who happens to be in love with a man can be unknowingly pawned to serve as another distraction from Goodell’s own House of Cards.
He is Ruler of the same Lords who feign patriotism and empathy in the forms of fighter jet flyovers and pink towels while corporations trample over each other to lay millions upon millions of dollars in tribute at their throne for the privilege of a 30-second commercial spot. This is the world they’ve created and would have gladly continued to distract us with their 24-hour, nationally televised carnival room of mirrors until Ray Rice inconveniently shoved a fist through it on camera. It doesn’t matter. We have taken notice, and we don’t care. We are distracted far too easily and now they know it too.
And this is why all of us this week will only hear one thing about this ubiquitous, omnipotent empire: “deflated footballs.” This is the NFL. This is The Shield. I am the Shield. You are the Shield. And no matter how many of these truths we realize, we cannot quit. And that’s exactly how Roger Goodell wants it... #Deflategate