I’m a rugby league fan. There are millions of others around the world.
However, every time I open the paper I don’t hear about off-season training or inside scoops for next year’s premiership. Instead, I read these media reports of things like sexual assault or violence against women.
This has got to stop!
In the NRL, we have seen five reports of some form of this since the grand final and it just makes me sick. People in the public domain get educated about these things. We know they exist and we know not to do it. We are told the consequences of what will happen if we do and we learn to respect women.
Apparently the same lessons have been lost on NRL players.
I’m calling for a stand now for the NRL directly. If a player gets charged and convicted, ban him for life.
I don’t care who it is – if it’s a 20-year-old rookie or a 35-year-old fan favourite veteran who everyone loves and the children adore – do not let him back in the game.
Sure I know some players have done it in the past and got to return. I’m prepared to see anything amongst the lines of “What about that player?”
Player welfare is incredibly important. But so is the welfare of women. These issues are eroding support for the game and if I was a member of the NRL board I would be saying “we can’t take it anymore”.
As fans of the game, we want to go through the off-season without having to read about off-field drama but sadly all because of one report or another, we do.
It’s not only turning off casual fans, but the game’s most loyal and rusted on supporters have had a gutful.
So what do you Roarers think? Should the NRL give lifetime bans to players who are convicted of such heinous acts from this point on?