The Ravens offered a trade-in program for Ray Rice jerseys, a good call after he was released and suspended indefinitely for punching his wife in the face.
But some Ravens fans — including several women — were still proudly wearing them last night.
Via the Associated Press, there were still a number of Rice jerseys evident in the crowd, despite the domestic violence charges which have at least for now ended his NFL career.
“There’s two sides to every story,” said Racquel Bailey, a 23-year-old waitress from Baltimore. “I saw the video. That’s their personal business, and it shouldn’t have affected his career. I don’t agree with domestic violence, but she’s still with him, so obviously it wasn’t that big of a deal. Everyone should just drop it.”
Of course, any study of abuse will tell you that victims often stay with their abusers, and will forgive them under the notion that they’ll never do it again (which often proves untrue).
There seemed to be a mix of reactions to those supporting the former Pro Bowl running back.
“You support a wife-beater!” one female fan yelled at male fan wearing a Rice jersey before the game.
“I took the bus here, so people were, like, ‘Good, I’m glad to see to someone out here showing support,'” said 18-year-old Gage Friend, 18. “But I’ve also seen a lot of people giving me dirty looks and people saying stuff to me like, ‘I can’t believe you’d wear that. Don’t you know what he did?’
“Yeah, I’m pretty aware of what he did. And, yes, it was awful and it was definitely a mistake on his part, but he deserves a second chance. . . . People have done so much worse in this league.”
Sure they have. Some were even implicated in murder trials, and obstructed justice.
They get statues.