View Full Version : Sorry, you can't play!
06-02-2000, 01:42 PM
OK… What do you guys think.
Wisconsin State Rep. David Travis has brought a bill in front of our State Legislature to ban any Athlete convicted of a “violent crime” from participating in an athletic event at a stadium in Wisconsin that is funded in anyway by state funds.
Presumably this means that someone like Tyrone Williams who has served time/community service for firing a gun at a moving vehicle would not be allowed to play at a new/renovated Lambeau Field.
Interesting concept. Looks like a lot of grey area to me though. How would the NFL react? Or any other Major sports League?
Is he trying to prevent Randy Moss from playing the Packers twice a year?
The immediate thought that jumps to mind is the whole Chmura flap.(Guilty or not I say he ends up walking.)
However, as we are in the midst of an effort to renovate or build a new Lambeau Field it may be an attempt to prevent the Packers from seeking public funds.(Which they are doing.)
06-02-2000, 01:53 PM
I don't see anything wrong about banning players from professional sports if they are conficted of a violent offense. I'd go a step further and penalize them heavily for drug and drunk driving offenses as well.
During the last superbowl I heard a sports commentator mention that there were no less than 4 players on the field who have been conficted or criminal offenses. These included: Break & Enter, Manslaughter due to drunk driving, Assault and Drug Trafficking.
Let's face it, since so many kids look up to these big dopes, the least they can do is try to set a good example by staying on the right side of the law. It's not too much to ask considering the exhorbitant salaries they draw these days.
06-02-2000, 02:05 PM
Aren't we all supposed to be equal in the eyes of the law? This law is clearly targeting athletes. Would you support a law that said you weren't allowed to be an architect if you were ever convicted of a violent crime. You could get another job, just not architect. Some kids look up to architects. Why are athletes any different?
06-02-2000, 02:09 PM
While I have no problem with a league banning a player who has demonstrated anti-social behavior while a member of that league, I do have a problem with the proposed legislation. Under it, a kid who gets a felony conviction while a juvenile (and prosecutors are charging and getting convictions for younger and younger kids each year) may as well never try to use pro or college sports to rehabilitate themselves.
Actually, I don't see much sense in the legislation except to allow some vote-seeking pol to stand up and declare that "We don't allow those sorts of people in our stadia." Who cares? If somebody wants to force professional or college athletes to actually behave as legitimate citizens, then pressure the leagues and the travesty called NCAA to fix their houses. Handing every cash-cow jock a wrist-slap as long as they are healthy and draw a gate is stupid. It is equally stupid to say that anyone who ever violates certain laws will be forever banned from playing in certain (state supported) venues.
06-02-2000, 04:16 PM
I see potential issues with improper punishment and interstate commerce.
If the league itself were to institute this policy I don't think there would be a problem, but for a state to prevent (and therefore punish) someone from participating in an event for past crimes after he has paid his debt to society sounds fishy to me.
And, since a player is also an asset of sorts, this could be construed as an attempt to restrict trade--a big no-no in Uncle Sam's eyes.
06-02-2000, 04:44 PM
Oh great and powerful manhattan, I do humbly request that you would be so kind as to move this thread to the Great Debates.
I have erred in my judgement and this appears to be a far deeper issue than I had first thought.
06-02-2000, 05:05 PM
Yeah, I noticed this one right before the techies upgraded our server and the board took a two-hour vacation. I'll send this thread right now to it's rightful place in the world.
06-02-2000, 05:31 PM
Maybe every state but one could pass a law like this. All the violent criminals would then have to be transferred to the NFL team in that state. Of course, they'd have to play all their games at home, but they'd probably kick some ass.
Seriously, I don't know if the law is a good idea, but if the city or state puts up the money for the stadium, they should call the shots. Better yet, these teams making money hand over fist should build their own damn stadium.
Will spectators guilt of violent crime be banned from the events to? How about people watching on TV?
Since many convicted felons are still allowed to do things like drive a car, own a gun, hold political office, and vote, I can't see why the government suddenly feels that violent athletes are such a detriment to society that they must be prevented from making a living?
Would this law also pertain to other people in the entertainment industry? Singers, actors, dancers, etc.
I have serious doubts that such a law would withstand constitutional scrutiny.
06-02-2000, 06:50 PM
I started thinking about this back when Latrell Spreewell choked his coach. IMHO, playing pro ball is a privelege. For each athlete in a given league, there are hundreds who would love to take his place. Therefore, I think that one screw-up, like a drug offence, crime, or choking incident, should be grounds for permanent dismissal from pro sports. That may be harsh, but considering athletes' status as role models, I think it would send a good message.
Now, as for putting this in place, I don't think legislation could do it. Too many chances for lawsuits, etc. It would have to be put into place by the leagues themselves. Of course, it is highly unlikely that they would have the guts to propose it, knowing that it could lead to the loss of some of their best players and associated income. And if it did get proposed, it would never get by the players' unions.
Another danger would be that someone could start rival leagues that welcomed the outcasts, which could eventually prove to be better than the originals. Ah, well.
LanceTurbo had an excellent point, which I choose to ignore due to my lack of a good rebuttal. :)
06-02-2000, 07:17 PM
"Just because I play pro ball doesn't mean I have to raise your kids."
- Sir Charles Barkley
06-02-2000, 07:45 PM
Actually, I think that a better idea might be to have athletes convicted of violent crimes go to jail.
06-05-2000, 08:11 AM
Looks like we are heating up a good one.
While I agree in principle the only other area I see a similarity is teaching. At least in Wisconsin if you commit a sex crime(not sure about other violent crimes) you're done. You will not teach again in this state. That is why they make teachers in Wisconsin submit to a criminal background check in order to get their teaching license.
The company I work for puts us through the same check prior to hiring because we work in the school districts.
The State Rep opens a good discussion on whether athletes should be allowed to play when they commit a crime. This will raise some discussion of societal background I'm sure.
While he raises an interesting question IMHO he brought the law forth to challenge the request for State funds by the Packers.(The Brewers got the State funds already and will have a new stadium next year if some idiot doesn't try to raise the roof sections in a heavy wind again.)
I think that such legislation may make it more difficult to prosecute young athletes for crimes they commit. I think it would compell more coverups and make their victims' lives even more hellish.
Speaking as someone whose life was turned upside down by an athlete, I say that this is one of the great bad ideas. in my first semester of college, I was stalked by a college football player. I reported his behavior and was promptly labled insane and kicked out of college. I lost everything. I am not insane, I never was, and I had other witnesses to his behavior. Nobody would say anything officially and get involved.
People already cover for athletes. Such a law would give them even more incentive to do so. I also think it is wrong to set them apart under the law. I think we need to discourage the idea that any kind of talent can excuse violence.
06-05-2000, 09:47 AM
I don't think state action is appropriate. Generally, if you've done your time, you should be allowed another chance.
That being said, I feel that the sports leagues and associations (and I particularly include the NCAA in this) should take it upon themselves to ban or otherwise punish persons with violent tendencies. Numbers are hard to find, but, when last I heard, student athletes accounted for an inordinate percentage of violent crimes on campus (more than half, which, given that a small percentage of students are athletes, is unsettling).
If you're not willing to behave yourself, you shouldn't get the privilege of competing, at least at the collegiate level.
06-05-2000, 12:18 PM
Umm, this is SPORTS, right? so who cares? :p
vBulletin® v3.7.3, Copyright ©2000-2013, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.