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Welcome to my blog. One Busy Momma is my space to rant about my life and the things that happen in it. I have a crazy life - and instead of focusing on the crazy - I like to focus on the funny. Because if I focused on the craziness - well, I'd have been shipped off to an institution long, long ago. And while, I'll admit, there are some days when being institutionalized sounds PRETTY GOOD compared to making ANOTHER diorama at 1am - I'd rather be right where I am - in my messy house with my not so perfect kids making crooked dioramas in the middle of the night.

Monday, September 8, 2014

When the Armor is Tarnished

Once upon a time, in a kingdom not so far away, there was a strong and brave Knight. He was known throughout the land as a GREAT Knight, perhaps one of the GREATEST Knights the villagers had ever seen before. He was known throughout the kingdom as a kind, compassionate and good man.  He stood up for the oppressed, the left-out and the bullied. He was so dedicated to being an advocate and friend to these people, he used some of his vast fortune to create a wonderful organization to help them. He didn't shut himself up in his beautiful castle as many wealthy and  great men do. This man was different. This man walked among the villagers. He lent a helping hand to whoever might  need his help. He spent time with the sick children of the village bringing them laughter and happiness. He had a great sense of humor and everyone who knew him personally loved him. "Who was this man?", you might ask. "I must know about him as he appears to be so brave and good and compassionate" you might be thinking. Well, Dear Readers, many of you do know of him. And if you don't yet know of this man - you soon will. Because you see, this village hero made a terrible, terrible decision. And that decision has changed how the villagers see him.  And it caused them to banish him from their kingdom. When once he was a revered member of the community, he is now an embarrassment to the kingdom. When once he was looked upon as a kind, gentle and compassionate man, he is now looked at as a brute, a thug,  a monster. How could this happen? What could have so tarnished his shining armor?

How did he go from this:


As  a fan, I am disappointed. As a woman, I am outraged. As the mother of a teenage daughter, I am frightened. Did he fool us all? Has he been the man in the elevator all this time? If you've seen the latest video posted by TMZ, you have probably come to the realization that I had this morning - this man has most likely done this to someone before. That wasn't a punch thrown by an inexperienced, totally wasted man. Those punches were square in the jaw. He didn't stumble, he didn't miss - bulls eye each time. Then when she falls and hits her head on the elevator railing on the way down - he doesn't even flinch. His demeanor is that of a guy just riding the elevator. Not the demeanor of a guy who just made a terrible choice or "mistake" and has any sense of remorse or concern over his unconscious fiancee.  When the doors open, he drags her out like a bag of potatoes. And drops her on the dirty floor. 

I was with a friend of Ray's this morning. Someone who I hold in very high esteem and is with Ray enough to really know him well. When I asked him if he saw the latest video, he said: "No. I can't watch it." He went on to tell me that he genuinely likes Ray. That he is not the man in the elevator. That he has known him as the knight in shining armor I described in my fairy tale above. He told me that this was so out of character for Ray it is mindblowing. He stands by him and sees this as a terrible mistake on Ray's part. He said something very thought-provoking. He said: "Everybody makes mistakes. But not everybody has them splashed across national TV, social media and newspapers and magazines. Imagine if our mistakes were publicized like Ray's? There is something in ALL of our pasts that we would never want others to know about - much less see. This was the first time that this happened. It is tragic and what he did was so wrong there isn't a word to describe it. But it was a mistake." 

Hmmm - interesting. I did point out that this was the first offense we've seen...we have no way of knowing if and when this has happened before. That made this man pause. And the look on his face was a look of such profound sadness, I was sorry that I said it.

I could go on and on and on about how foolish it was for this beautiful young woman to respond to this incident by marrying him. Intellectually I understand why she did it - once married she can invoke spousal privilege when called to testify against him. As a woman and a mother  I just want to go back in time and shake her shoulders and say "WHAT ARE YOU THINKING????? YOU ARE A MOTHER OF A BEAUTIFUL LITTLE GIRL! WHAT ARE YOU TELLING HER ABOUT HER VALUE? WHAT ARE YOU TELLING HER ABOUT HOW SHE SHOULD EXPECT TO BE TREATED BY THE MEN IN HER LIFE????" It makes my head hurt.

My dad just rang me to tell me that the Ravens terminated Ray Rice's contract a few moments ago. Too little, too late I say. Dad said something very interesting. He wondered if Rice would be picked up by another team. I was flabbergasted. I compared this to the Michael Vick incident a few years back. He is radioactive! Who would possibly pick him up? Dad said: "He's a great player and this game is all about money. When the smoke clears and another scandal distracts us - if he's not banned from the NFL, he'll get picked up. Maybe it will take a while - because an actual human being was involved here - but he'll get picked up."

Sigh...he's probably right. I don't know what to make of this. Reports indicate that the Ravens Management had already SEEN the latest footage when this whole incident became public. That would indicate that Management thought the 2 game suspension was A-OK, If that is true, I am even MORE disappointed in THEM. And let's not even talk about the NFL's response. 

The tragedy of this situation is NOT that we lost an incredible running back. It is NOT that Ray let us all down. ( And if you're not a Raven's fan and don't live in B'More hon - you can't understand how accurate my statement " letting us "ALL" down" is. We are a football town. We are true blue fans. Or shall I say true purple fans. We love our players. The energy in this city is incredible on game days and game weekends. EVERYONE wears purple on Fridays. EVERYONE wears their Ravens gear on Sundays or game days.  So yes, he let us ALL down.) But that doesn't even compare to whom else he let down.

This, my friends is the REAL tragedy here. A family is going through hell. When that beautiful little girl Googles her dad's name, she will undoubtedly be confronted with this nasty business. He's going to have a great deal of explaining to do. I pray, for her sake, that my friend is right - that this incident is so out of character for him it is mind-blowing.  I pray that his actions from this day forward will prove who he really is to the people who matter in his life. I pray that this family can heal and come out on the other side of this mess stronger than they were before. They are walking through the fire now. I hope the fire doesn't melt them. I pray that instead, the fire will forge a strength that can never be lost.