Domestic violence is not a pretty thing. Some in Louisiana may agree with the opinion that it would be more appropriately called domestic terrorism because of the long-term physical and psychological damage it can wreak on the victims. Whatever you call it, prohibiting abuse is the goal.
That same attitude is echoed among many of the professional sports leagues in the U.S. The National Football League has talked the talk in saying that it won’t abide such violence on the part of its players. But it’s been less successful in walking the walk when it comes to taking action.
Major League Baseball is proving itself to be a bit more successful in cracking the anti-violence whip as the case of Aroldis Chapman shows.
The New York Yankees reliever had been looking at up to a 40-game suspension in connection with an alleged altercation that happened back in October. According to a Miami police report, Chapman fired off multiple rounds from a handgun after arguing with his girlfriend. He also had been accused of choking her and smashing a window in the garage.
Chapman has not been charged with any crime in the case. That’s said to be due to prosecutor’s concern that conflicting evidence would make it difficult to get a conviction. But that did not stop MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred from pressing ahead with suspending the player.
Under a deal reached between the league, Chapman and the Major League Players Association, Chapman will sit out 30 games for the incident and won’t appeal the action.
In accepting the punishment, Chapman rankled victim advocacy groups by saying that he “did not in any way harm my girlfriend that evening.”
Reacting to Chapman’s comment, the head of the National Coalition against Domestic Violence observed bitingly that, “Any time a gun is involved, and there’s a domestic violence report, harm has been done to somebody.”