There’s No Easy Answer

Opinions are wide-ranging on what needs to happen to assure another Jonathan Martin-Richie Incognito situation won't reoccur. Readers weigh in, including one who believes the NFL should follow the example of another American institution

The responses to Monday’s column about my insistence that the NFL needs to do something about hazing gone wild (as in the case of Richie Incognito and his Dolphin cohorts) have been smart and varied. A veteran scribe who’s been doing this better than I for longer than I, Len Pasquarelli, insisted players do not need to be coddled. Common sense, not a slew of new rules, should be used, Pasquarelli writes. 

On ESPN.com, former lineman Mark Schlereth wrote: “Where were the men of character in the Miami locker room?” Opinions have been wide-ranging and strident. And yours will run at the bottom of this column.

But this is one I felt you should read in full. It comes from a major in the United States Army Medical Corps, Doug Powell, serving in Fort Bragg, N.C., after stints in Afghanistan and at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, caring for the wounded.

Major Powell writes:

“Reading the initial Ted Wells report … and the reaction to it, I’m struck by the comments that seek to explain or excuse the behavior of Incognito and his cohorts by the ‘unique atmosphere’ of the NFL locker room, by the fact that these are ‘young men, not yet mature’ and that one can’t ‘impose the behavior codes of the business world on the locker rooms of the NFL.’ There is another code of behavior that is successfully and rigorously imposed on young men, often not completely mature, who work in hazardous environments—that of the U.S. Military. There is no tolerance in the Armed Forces for racism, sexism or sexual harassment. This isn’t just something the politicians and the generals preach. Those in the ranks realize the terrible costs that these behaviors exact from our most valuable asset—our women and men in uniform—and we are quick to police ourselves. Are we perfect? No. But when bad behavior occurs, we don’t seek to excuse it; we work harder to eradicate it.

“If our warriors of all ages, all levels of maturity, all ranks can uphold codes of racial, gender and sexual-preference equality,” Major Powell writes, “can’t our heroes on the football field strive to do the same?”

“I can’t believe the type of behavior reported to be exhibited by at least some of the Miami Dolphins could exist in any organization that hopes to succeed or win championships or battles or wars. In the military, leaders are removed for creating or tolerating a ‘toxic command climate.’ Stories from people in such units describe verbal intimidation, humiliation and sexual harassment if not outright abuse. Leaders are removed because we all recognize that units plagued by such behavior become ineffective, with potentially disastrous consequences in battle.

“During my time in uniform, we have moved to integrate gay service members into the ranks and women into combat. I am honored to serve in a military that, if not ahead of cultural trends such as racial, gender and now sexual preference integration, is at least responsive and adaptive to them. The NFL has been a great supporter of the armed services. This support and connection is also something that the NFL uses to promote itself. If our warriors of all ages, all levels of maturity, all ranks and all jobs from initial-entry Private to seasoned special operator can uphold codes of racial, gender and sexual-preference equality, can’t our heroes on the football field strive to do the same?

“Thank you for the opportunity to express these thoughts.

“Very respectfully,

“Doug Powell, Major, Medical Corps, US Army”

Incognito will be an unrestricted free agent in March, free to sign with any team. (Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)
Incognito will be an unrestricted free agent in March, free to sign with any team. (Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)

This is not an easy subject. There are no simple ways to stop the Hall of Fame bullying exhibited by Incognito and his mates, bullying that went beyond any logical or sporting reason. In the next six weeks, between now and the end of the NFL meetings in late March, we’ll hear from experts in the field of human resources and psychology, and experts in player relations and behavior, and from scores of players themselves. Some will think no new rules or seminars are necessary, but I’m afraid that ship has sailed, thanks to Incognito. I don’t know what Goodell will do, but I have a feeling he’ll put some over-arching plan in place that will be like the bounty strictures after the Saints’ case in 2012 in one way. Whatever the league does, I think it’ll have one aim in mind: Players and coaches will know that any future violators will be dealt with harshly. You think any assistant coaches have offered players $5,000 to knock a quarterback out of a game in the past two years? I doubt it. The punishment of the Saints is too fresh in everyone’s mind; the line has been drawn by the league office that any bounties are not to be tolerated, and so only fools will now offer bounties at this point.

Is it too bad it had to come to this? Certainly. But the disgusting excesses force the league to act. I wish I had the faith in the league and its 1,900 players that there’s not another Incognito active now, but in the testosterone factory that is the NFL, there’s no guarantee another one isn’t on one of the 32 teams now. And what’s the worst thing that can happen with some strongly written rules about locker-room behavior and what can and can’t be said among the men who play the game? Is it a negative if the N-word is banned at NFL facilities? If gay jokes are verboten? If you can’t joke about shooting black people?

If the NFL puts in insurance policies to ban the worst things from the Wells report, it’s fine with me.

Thanks for your thoughtful words, Major Powell. And now onto your email:

TIME FOR JOE TO GO. How can Joe Philbin not be fired? Did you watch the Dolphins on Hard Knocks? He is a micromanager, berating staff for leaving papers on the practice field and a player for not tying his shoelaces. And he knew nothing about this? And it has been three days since the independent report concluded assistant coach Turner lied to the investigators on multiple occasions and HE HASN’T BEEN FIRED YET. There isn’t a workplace in America where an employee could lie to the investigator and keep his job. And Philbin says he is all for accountability.

—Kevin 

Those are very good questions. I don’t believe Philbin deserves to be fired. I believe he needs to know his team and his locker room better. Immediately. As for the line coach Jim Turner, I don’t see any way that he can be retained.

TALK BACK

Got a question for Peter? Send it with your name and hometown to talkback@themmqb.com and it might be included in next Tuesday's mailbag.

TRICKLE-DOWN EFFECT? Yes, the Wells report will lead to the NFL “professionalizing” the locker rooms and team infrastructure. But do you think the Wells report will have a trickle-down effect to college ball? After all, it’s not like Incognito and others were altar boys before they got to the NFL.

—Murray, Victoria, B.C.

Very good question. For now, I doubt it. The effect of the Wells report, in my opinion, will be to put coaches and top team officials on notice that they have to expect more of a professional attitude from players. That doesn’t mean players can’t goof around. It means they can’t do things that in every other work environment in America would be cause for firing.

ROGER NEEDS A PAYCUT. What do you make of the fact that Goodell’s annual compensation is 6% of the total settlement (and when combined with Bornstein’s—10%) allotted to former players with head injuries—$675 million?

—John, New Haven, Conn. 

A salary of $44 million is an incredible sum of current and deferred compensation for any CEO. I believe it’s too much. And I believe the compensation committee made up of some high-profile owners, needs to ask a question at this owners’ meeting in March about whether $70 million is too much for the top two earners in the league, regardless of how well anyone thinks they performed. 

The NFL last visited Mexico for a regular season game in 2005, when a record 103,467 fans saw a 49ers-Cardinals game. (Gene Lower/Getty Images)
The NFL last visited Mexico for a regular season game in 2005, when a record 103,467 fans saw a 49ers-Cardinals game. (Gene Lower/Getty Images)

THE NFL IN MEXICO? Your thoughts on why the NFL is driving so hard for London when looking outside of the U.S., but not taking a look at Mexico City? It’s in a time zone that’s friendlier to both U.S. television viewers and local attendees, and has a large number of football fans who would appear to offer the NFL a long-term, sustained attendance level. UK fans have eagerly attended so far, but can it be sustained over the long haul, when the UK has traditionally been slow to get excited about football? I don’t understand why the NFL is not looking harder at the closer and possibly better fitting option first.

—Scott

I have always thought that among North American cities, Mexico City is the best candidate for a team if you go outside of the United States. The NFL doesn’t seem ready to expand to Canada, not wanting to alienate the Canadian Football League. For that reason, I would certainly look harder at Mexico City. You are right: Fans in Mexico City would rabidly support a team. A plane flight and the weather would clearly be more advantageous than a team in England would provide. I believe the NFL is doing this because it believes going to Europe is more of a world move than going to Mexico. And the NFL wants to expand eventually around the globe.

FRANCHISE TAG INEQUALITY. You have mentioned several times in your MMQB about the franchise tag distinction for TE and WR. I would like your thoughts on one, in my opinion, even more bizarre then WR vs. TE—offensive linemen. All OL franchise tags are combined; meaning a franchise center is equal to a franchised left tackle. Why is that so? In Cleveland, for example, Alex Mack is a free agent and if is franchised will get more money then All-Pro LT Joe Thomas. Shouldn’t there be something to distinguish the OL positions? 

—Daniel R. Wise 

You’re absolutely correct. It should not be this way. I asked this question a year ago and the answer came back that the players felt that it helped everyone on the offensive line, instead of just tackles. I do understand that rationale, and I suppose there is no real harm to it. But the fact is, it’s going to be very hard for the Browns to franchise Alex Mack because of the inordinate cost relative to the value of his position. That’s a good catch by you. And you’re asking a question that many people in the league are asking this week.

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157 comments
Redskins
Redskins

Incognito has the perfect opportunity to save himself and his career. It will be a little painful but here it is:


Incognito holds a Press Conference and tells the world that, like his name, he has been a closeted, self-loathing Gay. He lashed-out at Martin because he saw the same weak character traits in Martin that Incognito feared within himself. He has decided that he should take this opportunity to come out of the closet and be proud of who he is. Further, that he is profoundly sorry that Mr. Martin had to take the brunt of his repressed internal sexual conflict and asks him and the league and the Dolphins to forgive him.

Now deal with that Goodell!!

Shyzaboy
Shyzaboy

I've seen a mention of the air quality in Mexico City, but no mention of the altitude. It is around 8000 feet above sea level (Denver is 5280 feet above sea level). That seems like a difficult combination for high-exertion activities like football.


Some people have mentioned the price of the tickets. I don't think that is an issue. I believe that the average income in Mexico City is higher than it is in Detroit, which has managed to keep a football team. Given the population of Mexico City metropolitan area is over 20,000,000, I don't think they'll have any problem finding enough people that can afford tickets! 


As to the crime, I feel more comfortable walking around Mexico City than Newark, NJ...


There are a lot of passionate NFL fans in Mexico. I'm surprised that the NFL isn't pushing into that market.

Bucky182
Bucky182

"You think any assistant coaches have offered players $5,000 to knock a quarterback out of a game in the past two years? I doubt it" 

I wouldn't doubt it. They just wouldn't do it in the same environment as before, not in front of the entire defense. I wouldn't doubt a coach has pulled aside a couple of players he trusted to keep their mouths shut and offered them up a little incentive for making a big play or big hit.

JimKirkwood
JimKirkwood

There's no room in the armed forces for sexual harassment? that may be the policy but from the reports of lack of action on alleged rapes it doesn't seem to be working .

josephfinn
josephfinn

"I don’t believe Philbin deserves to be fired."

Seriously?  Well, have fun with that sucking up to management.

raput76
raput76

Oh please. Who says "the N-word" most of the time? black guys to and about each other. It's not the European-Americans. And how often do the black players use "the H-word" (honky) to or about European-American players? That's such a spiteful word, so bitter and mean, the H-word. Sigh....

DanLeeper
DanLeeper

A quote from the USMC leader ship development. The 3 M's " missions. men and me". Take care of  the first 2 and the 3rd will take care of it's self. Works in the military , should be applied in the the corporate world and would be well served in sports

." Serve those that serve you". All in all it's called TEAM, not "I" but WE.

mdamulligan
mdamulligan

Keep the over paid Commissioner out of the locker room and let men be men. If you impose all these rules that is a slippery slope, how long until more lawsuits are filled for minor incidents. Ray Lewis, Ronnie Lott, Teddy Bruschi and men such as these are what you need in a locker room, not the 44 million dollar man.

bryanmc86si
bryanmc86si

As a former enlisted Marine I can tell you that Major Powell obviously has no idea what goes on his own ranks. Hazing and harassment every bit as bad as what is described in the Wells report occurs on a daily basis within our armed forces. Officers were no exception to this. I can recall plenty of mess nights and Marine Corps balls were they behaved inappropriately as well. Worse, it isn't difficult to find numerous instances were those in leadership positions have covered up sexual assault and harassment or improperly influenced courts-martial. To present the military as being a shining example for the NFL to emulate is a bit comical. I understand that the DoD has clearly outlined policies for workplace behavior and mandates that everyone be trained in regards to these issues but that didn't change the fact that according to Pentagon research 1 in 4 women will be sexually assaulted during their time in service. Until we can sort that out I think we should hold off on declaring our troops to be the champions of workplace equality and professionalism.

Tampalawyer11
Tampalawyer11

Peter -- why is it "too much [referring to Goodell's compensation]"?  Compared to what?  Is that the spectre of dreaded income inequality raising its head?  I'll admit I'm envious, but it is their money to spend as they please.  I'm just waiting for you to reveal your income and tell us why it's not "too much."  And if you do think it is too much, which I doubt, I'm ready for you to reveal the charity to which you will direct the excess.

Tampalawyer11
Tampalawyer11

Before you commend the UCMJ to the NFL, try to remember that there's been a surge of alleged sexual assaults at the service academies and reports of an increase in the branches as well.  Don't forget Tailhook.  I'm not saying things shouldn't be more tightly regulated, but pick better examples than this.

navok
navok

i think london and mexico city are to far away to put an expansion team there... doing it once or twice a year is fine but i mean no way are fans going to make that travel

heisenbergwho
heisenbergwho

“If our warriors of all ages, all levels of maturity, all ranks can uphold codes of racial, gender and sexual-preference equality,” Major Powell writes, “can’t our heroes on the football field strive to do the same?”


with all due respect, Major Powell, it has been a looong time since you have been in the common ranks, and on top of that you were not in the Infantry.  but I have seen first hand a 19 year old kid in my company, different platoon, who was a great shot, great physical test score, did everything right, but he was bisexual.  He got RUN INTO THE GROUND.  the E4's (specialists) and often even sergeants would smoke or haze the living crap out of him.  Even in the morning, before P.T., a time when everyone is usually still half asleep minding their own business, they made him do springs with a gas mask on.  He was soaking with sweat at 5 in the morning, and this is Fort Carson, Colorado, as cold a duty station you'll find.  Eventually he got sent to a different company, of tankers, which is a huge slap in the face for an infantryman.  I have heard more stories like this from other soldiers I meet at the cafeteria, gyms, etc.


If the military got half the media coverage the NFL got, I guaran-freaking-tee the public would be apalled.

BillRobinson
BillRobinson

@Bucky

Pretty cynical guy. If there is such a coach, he surely is on the stupid side with a risk profile that's amazing in this day of the Internet.

BillRobinson
BillRobinson

@Jim

Complex undertaking with little information available in a very political environment. One would hope the NFL can make more rapid progress.

usameos6
usameos6

@JimKirkwood  Unfortunately, this is true and the fact that even Congress has done more to stop this than the military has itself speaks volumes.

Mike26
Mike26

@mdamulligan  The depth of your dearth of a professional prospective is scary.

usameos6
usameos6

@bryanmc86si  Consider the source - to most Soldiers, docs are sort of like placekickers.  They have a valuable skillset and they are coddled throughout their careers but are more valued for their medical acumen than they are for the Soldiering skills.  Interesting that the majority of people that I've seen posting that have served (and I have over 24 years in) don't really see the comparison as valid and most people that have not served say "He makes great points and this should be considered."  Hooah.

JayReardon
JayReardon

@bryanmc86si  Great points!  And the other big difference between the NFL and the military is that the former is a big time FOR PROFIT business, lost of $ at stake all around.  Semper Fi Devil Dog/Jay Reardon/Lt.Col., USMC, ret.

Diana
Diana

@bryanmc86si  Thank you, Bryan. You stated pretty much what I was going to - except you speak from personal experience, and me just extrapolating from what's been going on with Congress regarding sexual assault in the military.

BillRobinson
BillRobinson

@Tampalawyer11  

Why? What don't you agree with in Major Powell's comments? Other than they don't have it perfect yet, what would you do differently? It seems the foundation is in place, which you certainly can't say for the NFL. Rather than criticize, what examples would you suggest?

Bucky182
Bucky182

@BillRobinson I'm not saying it did happen but why couldn't it happen again? Do arrests, fines, and jail/prison stop drug dealers from dealing drugs? Not exactly. Definitely different circumstances and context but the analogy rings true. Will Gregg Williams do it again? I highly doubt it. But who is to say there hasn't been a DC or LB coach since that pulled one or two guys aside (not the entire defense in the film room in front of other coaches and players) and offered up some sort of incentive?

usameos6
usameos6

@BillRobinson  Actually, there is plenty of information available and it's a shame that Congress has taken more action on this than the military leadership.  The fact that there is still a "Rape Alley" on KAF is shameful.

BillRobinson
BillRobinson

@Ilovemesomeme @josephfinn  

You're looking pretty stupid after recent events - the firing of Turner and O'Neill, the interview of Philbin in Indianapolis where Philbin still remains clueless, and the article by Don Banks.


No question, Philbin has little credibility at the moment and is on thin ice as he goes into the next season. Can he learn enough and demonstrate control? We'll see.

BillRobinson
BillRobinson

@love

He has a long way to go on the learning curve. He better hope that Ross is a patient guy. Coaching a pro football team is a challenging leadership undertaking, but the complexity and size of the organization is not all that remarkable. Other coaches seem to have a better handle on their jobs.

Ilovemesomeme
Ilovemesomeme

@BillRobinson @Tampalawyer11 Also, if you've seen the latest rape statistics you'd use a different line then "they don't have it perfect yet."  Uh...........you think?  It's gotten progressively work.  There not moving towards perfection, they're running away from it.

Ilovemesomeme
Ilovemesomeme

@BillRobinson @Tampalawyer11 I think the point is that his words ring hollow.  In theory it sounds great, but as we all know, it's the execution that matters.  If it was as simple as making suggestions we'd all just suggest that NFL players all act like adults and treat each other with dignity and respect.  Unfortunately this is real life and suggesting that doesn't make it a reality. 

Mike26
Mike26

@BillRobinson @Tampalawyer11  Bill, Major Powell's comments were fine.  However, in the past 2-3 years alone there's been a number of issues with sexual harassment, etc. in the military.  Therefore, leading with a headline of "Learn from the Military" is a bit presumptuous.  Just because the military HAS accountability policies doesn't mean that they're the best example.  That's all.

Ilovemesomeme
Ilovemesomeme

@BillRobinson @Ilovemesomeme@josephfinn Bill, you've ignored every post I've made that's pointed out your gross contradictions at every turn.  The bottom line is you want to hold everyone else accountable for the failures of Martin.  Not sure what else to say to you.  I'm not going to conversate with somebody who cherry picks and is being intentionally obtuse.  It's just a waste of time.  Be easy. 

usameos6
usameos6

@BillRobinson @Ilovemesomeme @josephfinn  Not sure that he looks so stupid - he said that Philbin shouldn't be fired and at least as far as I see it - Philbin still has a job.  I don't think he ever said "nothing should change" - and based on the report, there was no way the Dolphins were going to retain the O Line Coach or the Head Trainer, but at the end of the day, Philbin still has his job and I think it's pretty unlikely that he'll be replaced this season.  



Ilovemesomeme
Ilovemesomeme

@BillRobinson @Ilovemesomeme The Wells report also supports the fact that Martin himself did some of the abusing. 


I'm suggesting Philbin shouldn't be fired as there no way he could have, or should have known about the situation.  Here's a take from Chris Cooley:


Then Cooley suggested that players who have a problem with how they’re being treated just need to make that clear.

“I’ll use a good example,” he said. “Trent Williams came in as a rookie and thought I had hazed him. Casey Rabach came early one day and soaked [Williams's] backpack in water and then put it in the freezer, so everything in his backpack froze. I thought it was hysterical, and I went up to him at practice and I said I heard your backpack was frozen. And he was ready to fight me. Fred Davis had to break it up. Do you think I was going to mess with Trent Williams after that? No, I wasn’t going to mess with the guy. I mean, if he’s going to fight me over something, and I could tell that it bothered him that much, I’m going to stop.

“Now, maybe Incognito wasn’t going to stop,” Cooley went on. “But if there’s a fight or an altercation, it comes out that there’s a problem and you deal with it. Your coaching staff deals with it, the PR people deal with it, your HR people deal with it. Just say something man. If you’re getting bullied, go say something. That’s what they teach 8-year-old kids, right? Just go say something. And you’re not a tattletale. Just go say I have a problem with his behavior, it’s not good for the workplace.”


Pretty easy stuff.

BillRobinson
BillRobinson

@Ilovemesomeme @BillRobinson  

Most of us have seen similar reports in the news. Two comments: (1) There are millions of people in military service and we're still pretty early in the process of managing very significant changes in introducing gender equality in a world-wide theater of operations and (2) The fact that we have this data available (plus a whole lot more that we haven't seen that the military collects) is in itself a very significant accomplishment.


I'd be a whole lot more concerned if we didn't have this kind of data, which would indicate the military leadership is not trying to manage the challenges.


The bill before the Senate indicates there are many complex questions that need to be addressed in how to handle the procedural issues of administering justice. The question in the bill is how to best handle these cases in a way that balances traditional chain-of-command considerations with the unique challenges of addressing sexual assault which sometimes includes senior officers. Remember that all kinds of behavior is currently addressed within the military chain-of-command in the military legal system and the extra-judicial actions of commanding officers. Have you served in the military? If so, in what capacity?


You have an amazing talent for oversimplifying complex issues and failing to offer constructive criticism. That doing research in a way that seeks data that supports your previously held point of view. The term to describe your approach is cognitive dissonance.

BillRobinson
BillRobinson

@Ilovemesomeme @BillRobinson  

I'm sorry but I miss the contradiction. Empathy is called for with Martin, an individual player who was abused as supported by the Wells Report and expert opinion.


The question with Philbin was whether he should be fired. The question is concerning his competence as a head coach. Are you suggesting he has been abused in an unrelenting attack by his peers with collusion on the part of his GM or owner?


How many times do you want to repeat the same information on Philbin not knowing about what happened on his watch? I don't see anything new in your comments. Haven't seen anything nnew from you in days.

Ilovemesomeme
Ilovemesomeme

@BillRobinson Just in case you are interested in some facts, here is an article that has links to dozens of studies and reports conducted on the vast amount of rapes and sexual assaults in the military.  You've continuously stated the great progress the military has made, and praised them for their diligence, all the while claiming the NFL should use them as an example. 


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/soraya-chemaly/military-sexual-assault-facts_b_4281704.html


When you are saying those things, what are you basing your claims/opinions off of? 

Ilovemesomeme
Ilovemesomeme

@BillRobinson Again.  You continue to contradict yourself.  On one hand you preach empathy, and to listen to the professionals who explain why Martin was outwardly friendly with Incognito, and scared to tell anyone.  Then you admonish the Coach for not knowing that a player who was outwardly friendly with another player was really being tormented by him.  You can't have it both ways. 


Either Martin acted friendly towards Incognito because he was scared, or because he really liked him.  Either way, we know for a fact that he acted friendly towards him.  We know this because they texted each other thousands of times, hung out together all the time, and harassed teammates together.  Furthermore, any player who has ever spoken up during this situation has said that they thought the two were friends. 


That being said, how is it possible for Philbin to know they were not? 


I'd love to hear you answer that. 

Ilovemesomeme
Ilovemesomeme

@BillRobinson I'm over simplifying anything.  You're confusing forming a plan, with executing a plan. 


The NFL has a policy in place that sets expectations for how employees should treat each other.  So does the military.  As I said before, you can set expectations all you want, but you will ALWAYS have people who don't meet them.  It's just the way it is. 

Ilovemesomeme
Ilovemesomeme

@BillRobinson You've written numerous posts touting the "great progress" made by our military, without any substance or support to back up that statement.  I call you on it, and mention factual evidence and you respond with "you don't know what you're talking about." 


How about this Bill.  Provide some evidence to support your claims of "great progress."  I'll be waiting. 

BillRobinson
BillRobinson

@love

You have a great talent at oversimplification. Hopefully, the NFL develops a more comprehensive plan than what you laid out.

BillRobinson
BillRobinson

@love

With all due respect, other than reading headlines and observing politicians at work, I don't think you know what you're talking about. Mike's point is a good one - initially the focus is going to show the scope of the problem is greater than previously recognized. Go back to the Teddy Roosevelt famous quote about the man in the arena.

What evidence do you have they are "running away from it." You always have lots of opinions about lots of subjects. That's fine, but often you have little credibility IMO.

The military has a lot of smart people who are dedicated to making these changes work. If you don't agree, you probably haven't served. Now we'll see how well the NFL solves their problem with 32 rather small entities.

Mike26
Mike26

@Ilovemesomeme @BillRobinson @Tampalawyer11  Well put. What also needs to be recognized is that these policies finally begin more enforcement then there WILL be higher numbers initially as prime (sometimes longtime) instigators/aggressors are removed from duty and squeezed out by the military.

Ilovemesomeme
Ilovemesomeme

@BillRobinson @Ilovemesomeme So you're comparing the military integrating men and women into the work force together, with the NFL integrating in gays?  Okay. 


So again, when you say the military has made progress, do you mean just the simple fact that they've integrated?  You must because it's clear many of the women that were/are integrated are being raped and sexually assaulted. 


Do you remember "don't ask don't tell?"  Do you remember all the horror stories about how gays were treated while in the military during that time?  Do you have any facts that would show us that gays are no longer mistreated in the military? 


It's apparent the only thing you're really interested in doing is trying to belittle me because you may or may not have coached lacrosse somewhere and based on that experience feel your baseless opinion is worth something.  As I said originally I don't buy that you've coached anything at a high level.  Google doesn't buy it either. 


Again, the NFL I believe is committed to treating everyone with respect, we have no reason to believe otherwise.  And if we're going off of track record they've done a far better job of it than the military has, at any and every point in time. 


You accuse me of finding evidence to support my stance, that's true, I have.  You haven't found any to support yours because there isn't any.

BillRobinson
BillRobinson

@Ilovemesomeme @BillRobinson  

Those with reading comprehension skills know how I have arrived at my conclusions. The change or task I am referring to is one I discussed before: the military is trying to provide equal opportunities to its members by introducing where possible greater integration of the sexes within it units and questioning traditional limitations about what tasks can be performed by both men and women.


Who would have thought it is possible to have combat ships with both men and women serving on board, or combat units with both men and women? Those are pretty significant changes that have been undertaken to not only address issues of equality but also a better use of available personnel resources in creating and maintaining our highly professional military organization(s).


It's not apparent that you know much about football or coaching. It is even ;less apparent that you knnow anything about our military.

Ilovemesomeme
Ilovemesomeme

@BillRobinson What change are you talking about Bill when you say "the military introduced the change?" 


When you say they're "committed to the task" what task are you referring to? 


Both the NFL and Military have guidelines and expectations on how people are to be treated.  Just as both obviously have members of their group that don't abide by those guidelines or meet those expectations. 


You're praising the military, and bashing the NFL and you've provided absolutely nothing of substance to show how one is better than the other in regards to how the members treat each other. 


We know what your personal opinion is on the matter.  We have no idea how you arrived at it. 

Ilovemesomeme
Ilovemesomeme

@BillRobinson Yet you've touted impressive "progress."  Care to explain specifically what it is you're talking about?

BillRobinson
BillRobinson

@Mike

Of course there are issues. it's a complex issue being played out in a huge entity (actually entities that differ significantly) operating on a global basis. Introducing and managing change has always been one of the most challenging undertakings. The most important thing is the military introduced the change. There are always mistakes made in such an effort.

As to whether they are the best example or not, neither of us probably know enough details to judge. There are a number of similarities, but the scope is so dramatically different. A pro football team is a very small organization. It's relatively trivial in size - a fraction of the size of the destroyer I served on. That's why I have trouble with Philbin's supposed lack of knowledge. He's a second line manager of a small group. He should have known.

Back to the military, I remain impressed at their efforts, and I believe they are committed to the task. I'm not impressed with critics that offer no suggestions and have almost no knowledge of the subject.

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