Shutdown Corner - NFL

As you know, a couple of Steelers have had a very hard-hitting offseason, particularly when it comes to their women. James Harrison and Cedrick Wilson have both been involved in incidents where they were alleged to have hit women.

Harrison remains on the roster, and Wilson was cut immediately. In what may be a related story, Harrison is a very good and valuable player, while Wilson is not. Hmmmm.

Is this a Steeler double standard? Is Dan Rooney saying it's a little more acceptable to punch a woman if you're a really good linebacker?

Heck no! He's saying it's acceptable to punch a woman if you're running late for a baptism.

"I know many are asking the question of [why] we released Wilson and Harrison we kept,'' he said. "The circumstances -- I know of the incidents, they are completely different. In fact, when I say we don't condone these things, we don't, but we do have to look at the circumstances that are involved with other players and things like that, so they're not all the same."

"What Jimmy Harrison was doing and how the incident occurred, what he was trying to do was really well worth it," he said of Mr. Harrison's initial intent with his son. "He was doing something that was good, wanted to take his son to get baptized where he lived and things like that. She said she didn't want to do it."
Oh. Well, then, by all means, if he wanted to do something the wife didn't, it's cool to go all Clubber Lang on her. Aim for the nose, James. That really hurts.

Sigh. I don't know what to say here. Dan Rooney's track record is beyond reproach, but a knuckleheaded quote is a knuckleheaded quote. I don't know if it makes him a bad guy, though. I mean, if Gandhi's last act before he died was to record a misogynistic rap album, he'd still be a decent guy, right?

So I'm not advocating that Dan Rooney be drawn-and-quartered because of this. The guy who came up with the Rooney Rule is alright with me. But I'd find it easy to believe that he's less than 100% sensitive when it comes to women's issues, and he certainly wouldn't be alone in that, in the NFL or in the world. 

He did backpedal a bit, said the Steelers don't condone domestic violence in any way, and that such incidents would be handled on a case-by-case basis.

You know the weird thing about this? If the Steelers had kept Cedric Wilson, too, no one would have said one word.

• Dan Rooney's Legacy Gets A Black Eye / Lion in Oil
• Steelers slogan: 'One for the hon' / Pittsburgh Tribune Review

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