Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Drop your weapons


Post #23 Topic: Sean Taylor

On Monday morning, Red Skins safety Sean Taylor was shot in the groin above the femoral artery. He died Tuesday from excessive blood loss, having never regained consciousness after being shot the day before.

Late Monday afternoon, reports out of the hospital were positive. According to a nurse, Sean had “grabbed her hand”, and showed “minor facial movements”. Unfortunately, these were the last two signs of responsiveness from a man that had become known as one of the NFL’s most feared hitters, but also one of the Washington Redskins most notorious leaders both on and off the field.

Taylor was no angel. Immediately after being drafted Taylor was fined for missing a mandatory post-draft symposium. Soon thereafter Taylor was arrested (but not convicted) of drunk driving. In 2006, Taylor was fined for spitting in the face of then Tampa Running Back, Michael Pittman.

But according to teammates, Taylor’s life had taken a turn for the better. He had become a father, and a dedicated one at that. That dedication seemed to spread to other venues of is life as, according to his coaches, Taylor became more devoted to excelling at the game of football through better training regiments and peak physical conditioning.

Taylor, a pro-bowl free safety will be next to impossible for the Redskins to replace. Although insignificant in the grander scheme of things, Taylor’s death will have serious repercussions for a Redskins team that was still in the running for one of the NFC’s wildcard spots. As eloquently stated by ESPN, Sean Taylor; Dead at 24.

(I apologize if the following is too early, but given the lack of response to yesterday’s Hurrican Katrina jokes I figured that my audience (Scuba, Ian) is pretty, pretty, pretty insensitive.

WTF FUCK IS UP WITH PEOPLE SHOOTING NFL PLAYERS and vice versa? This is not the 1st time this has happened. These guys are getting shot at like injured deer. This is the 2nd NFL player to die this year from gunshot wounds, and far from the first to be caught wielding or being targeted by said weapon. Former Bronco Darrent Williams was killed in a drive-by shooting in January. Tank Johnson was suspended 8 games for illegal possession of a concealed weapon. In March, Super Bowl champion Dexter Reid was arrested during a DUI investigation for possession of an unregistered weapon. Jaguars wide receiver Charles Sharon was charged with, get this, STEALING A HANDGUN in March. Ray Lewis apparently but inconclusively killed someone the night before his Baltimore Ravens won the Super Bowl. Rae Carruth killed his girlfriend and was accused of “shooting into an occupied vehicle”. Police later found the Rhodes Scholar hiding in a garbage dumpster, perhaps looking for the rest of his meth and chicken milkshake.

According to former offensive tackle Lonas Brown, a league veteran of 19 years… EVERYONE IN THE NFL HAS A GUN. Brown recalls seeing guns in locker rooms, in people’s cars, in training camp dormitory rooms. Brown even remembers seeing players with their guns ON TEAM PLANES????????????????????????????? WTF, seriously, WTF?. And we thought Michael Vick sneaking onto a team plane with a few headies was a problem. Next thing we know Eli Manning will be bringing his spray shotgun onto the field for endzone celebrations (should he reach the endzone in this the part of the season that extends past the college football season, which interestingly enough, was too long for Eli to succeed as well).

Now Sean Taylor didn’t kill himself. And one would be inclined to say that he is devoid of any guilt in this matter. But reading the press release, three interesting notes come to one’s attention.

First, this was the second time this week that Taylor’s house got broken into. The first time, the thief took nothing but left a knife on Taylor’s bed. If that wasn’t a message saying “I’m coming for you”, then what is? Clearly this was no crime of passion, but rather one of your classic pre-meditated burglaries. And as is the case in most burglaries, it appears as if this one was not unprovoked.

Second, Taylor encountered trouble several years ago when he was caught “brandishing a gun”. Anyone making more than a mill a year should never be caught brandishing anything but their wallet (unless in NYC, where brandishing a wallet is enough to incite a brutal police killing).

Third, when Taylor heard the intruder while in bed with his girlfriend, he grabbed the Machetti from under his pillow. This is not Jamaica. There are no congo insurgents in Miami. Why on earth would someone keep a machete under his pillow unless he expected that he would soon have to use it. That would be like Jim Norton keeping a condom under his cookie-jar. Simply put, unless you provoke someone, you never have an actual need for a machete.

Now I mourn just as much as the next guy. On this day, in this instance, Sean Taylor did not deserve to die. As aforementioned, Taylor had recently “turned his life around”. Taylor had a kid, and Taylor had a promising career ahead of him. But this whole incident should be the final straw in a series of incidents that has yet to break the camel’s (NFL discipline committee) back.

League officials need to intervene. Perhaps metal detectors would do the trick, instituted everywhere. There absolutely can not be guns in planes, locker rooms or dormitories. Honestly, how long is it before one of these weapons accidentally discharges killing an innocent punter, or the water boy. How many people need to be shot before the NFL realizes that it has a gun problem. When possession is the norm, its time for an intervention.

And the penalties must be strict. “If you get caught with a gun, registered or not, outside of a game farm or a video arcade then you are suspended for the entire season, with potential for increased punishment depending on the weapons”. At first, none of these thugs will listen. In fact, as part of a recruiting package the university of Miami provides all targeted High school juniors with a Bayonet (true fact). They’ll still continue to carry their guns. UNTIL… Until Chad Johnson or some other high profile player gets caught with one. That 1st player’s suspension will cause the team to issue their own mandated searches of lockers and luggage, and levy their own punishment. Suddenly people will listen. Brett Farve will refuse to go into his locker room when there is a gun lying around. People will begin to talk and before long the epidemic will realize baseball-steroidesque proportions. And then people will ditch the weapons just like bonds ditched the evidence (the clear and the cream).

Now taking guns out of the hands of professional athletes may not help to avoid all potential gun-related deaths/injuries. But as evidenced by several NFL player’s willingness to flash their gats, there will undoubtedly be a lot less intimidated and threatened men out there consequently looking for revenge. And even if one life is saved as a result of this new mandatory team gun searches, then the rule will have served its purpose. A gun problem is a bad problem. Its not like collegiates failing classes, or hockey players checking from behind. Guns are a matter of life and death and their existence on the playing field (and relevant extensions) needs to be curtailed if not extinguished entirely.

Sean Taylor, R.I.P. May the awfulness that is your death serve some good in demonstrating just how negligent the NFL is in maintaining its lax standard of investigating it’s player’s tendencies to possess illegal, and often deadly or death provoking weapons.

Other Notes:

Chris Rock: “Never go to a party with a metal detector. Sure it seems safe inside. But what about all those crazy fuckers outside with guns? THEY KNOW YOU AINT GOT ONE.

Rapping is my hobby, my house has a lobby, my sisters act snobby because I feed em thousands.

1 comment:

Andrew said...

weak other notes. i thought u were moving them to the top. jon rich likes penis.