The League

Dawn Knight

Dawn Knight

The author of Taliaferro: Breaking Barriers and a high school English teacher.

Let it go, Goodell


High schools have plenty of rules. Some of these rules are in place to promote safety, others to promote an atmosphere more conducive to learning. These rules encompass everything from prohibiting drugs and violence to backpacks and PDAs (public displays of affection). As teachers, we send students who violate the rules to the deans. However, we do not send every student who violates every policy. Sometimes, if the infraction is warranted and is not hurting anyone, we ignore it altogether. Other times, we remind students of the policy and let them off with a warning.

This week Bengals receiver Chris Henry died. I don't know what made his fiancée leave in anger or what made him chase her down and jump in the bed of her truck. Frankly, I don't feel the need to know. I do know that there are three kids left without a father, that there is a young woman who will forever live with that guilt, and that Henry's life ended just as he seemed to be getting it together. It's tragic.

Henry's friends have a lot of reason to grieve, and that grief is manifesting itself in many ways. If some of that grief is being acted out in touchdown dances or on practice jerseys, Goodell might want to consider ignoring it. Typically, I get tired of the antics of overpaid, spoiled athletes and would encourage Goodell to fine them. Not this time. These players were merely paying tribute to a friend. As a teacher, I probably would have chosen to ignore that policy violation. At worst, I would have let them off with a warning.

By Dawn Knight  |  December 21, 2009; 10:54 AM ET  | Category:  Cincinnati Bengals , Roger Goodell Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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