President Barack Obama spoke out against domestic violence on Monday after the scandal with the video in which Ray Rice punches his teen-fiancée. The U.S. President spoke about the incident saying that hitting a woman is something a real man never does, regardless of where the act itself occurs, in the public eye or in the confines of one’s home.
Josh Earnest, spokesman for the White House completed the President’s statement explaining that Obama is father to two daughters and that he would never accept that his daughters would be treated as such. Additionally, Earnest said that Obama, as any American, considers that civilized societies should never accept acts of domestic violence.
Last but not least, the White House spokesman said that domestic violence is a phenomenon “that is bigger than football.”
Rice was released by The Ravens on Monday, right after the video was published on the website TMZ.
In a 3 minute video filmed in the Revel Hotel and Casino, Rice Ray is shown entering the elevator together with his fiancée Janay Palmer. After they begin fighting, he delivers a knockout blow that has her falling unconscious on the floor where she remains for over two and a half minutes, as Rice attempts to drag her out of the elevator before bystanders intervene and help the woman to her feet. Apart from his Ravens release, Ray Rice is now indefinitely suspended by the National Football League because of the gruesome incident.
Palmer was also arrested after the altercation on assault charges.
A similar video was released in which Rice was dragging unconscious Palmer from an elevator in a casino in Atlantic City. Rice was fined $500,000 by the NFL at that time and suspended him for two games, but it seems that the punishment was too lenient.
The NFL claimed not having seen the video before it had been leaked on Monday, despite claims made by a hotel employee that the NFL had in fact seen the video before Rice’s suspension.
While in August, the NFL announced that it will enforce stricter domestic violence penalties such as six-game bans for first offenders, Roger Goodwell, NFL commissioner admitted that his disciplinary decision at that time had allowed the public to question the NFL’s understanding of the toll that domestic violence has on countless families. He stated that he takes responsibility for the decision he made at that time and that future similar circumstances will properly reflect the NFL’s values.