by Chris Stevenson
How much slack is given to star white athletes, who are accused of rape? It seems they do pay a price, but it’s a very quiet one. Yes networks like ESPN cover it, but I haven’t noticed regular news coverage from the network and cable giants. In fact it pales when compared to backlash along the lines of Tiger, Vicks and Kobe. Conspicuously lacking is the gratuitous around-the-clock-coverage that essentially is the prime instigator that brainwashes blue-collar White America into vehement suburban commandoism (hate mail, anonymous threatening phone calls, death threats, constant talk-radio participation and other no-life activities).
Ben Roethlisberger is again accused of raping a young female, the big networks and press seem as reluctant to cover big Ben as much as his victims were to party with him. Here’s a high-profile figure, playing a high-profile position, on one of the winningest and most higly-publicized teams in sports history and not only is big media refusing to focus heavy coverage on him and his alleged crime, most of his sponsors refuse to drop him. According to the Pittsburgh Post Gazette.com: “Companies that have endorsement agreements with Mr. Roesthlisberger most likely are waiting for more information about the case, said Darcy Bouzeos, President of Chicago-based DLB Ltd., a sports and entertainment marketing company that assists corporations and public relations firms in securing talent… For now though few seem to be pulling back.”
If this doesn’t knock you for a loop, then nothing will. The only company that bolted Ben is a relatively small Pittsburgh-based snack food firm named after what really should be big Ben’s sexual choice; Beef Jerky. The other irony about that is “Big Ben’s Beef Jerky” ended their association with Roethlisberger after a Georgia prosecutor announced on the 12th he would not prosecute. Well if Jerky says they ain’t buyin’ it, then should you or I? Well not Nike, who had no comment, nor Dicks Sporting Goods who according to USA Today, won’t return calls or emails. If these companies are truly “waiting for more information” they need to do what the host of the Number One Sports Show in the Nation did; do an online search. Talk show host and Fellow Network commentator Patrick Freeman has been pulling up pages of testimony of both cases including a 36-page affidavit by the 2008 victim.
If many of you are having trouble believing the Georgia State University student in this Capitol City nightclub incident, then perhaps the testimony of the first alleged victim will give you some clue. In June ’08 an Andrea McNulty; a desk clerk for Harrah’s Lake Tahoo meets Roethlisberger who is in town for a celebrity golf tournament. Reportedly the 2 have a pleasant casual conversation. The next day (6/11) Roethlisberger is said to ask McNulty to come to his room to fix his TV. She says she finds nothing wrong with it and as she attempts to leave she is sexually assaulted. The common thread to both accusations is 1-both women though having no connection to each other accuse Roesthlisberger of blocking a doorway. 2-So well-loved is this prominent white quarterback that staff members of the locations in question seem to scramble to cover for him as opposed to their defending their fellow employee or customer.
What seems clearly evident is the well-known after-affects of rape, McNulty seems to have these as well; depression, PSTD, insomna etc., and there doesn’t seem to be no mention of her having these traits before the date in question. As of late (4/22/10) McNulty has taken an offer to settle the case off the table. Understand she did not goes through with criminal charges because a hotel desk clerk lacks the resources to match that of a big time quarterback, between that and not wanting her named dragged through the mud , all she fought for was a civil suit. Her attorney Calvin R. X. Dunlap is quoted saying the deadline is past. Back in… she asked that Ben admit the accusation is true, write a letter of apology and donate $100,000 to a Reno group for abused women. There are two sides to both of these accusations, but understand this column only questions major media and the lack of around-the-clock coverage they give it. There was certainly two sides to Kobe, OJ, but those were deliberately overlooked. The answer to that may be best found in one of Freeman’s questions: “Is the criminality accusations towards a black athlete as relevant in the news as a white athlete?”
One thing for certain, Georgia DA’s, law enforcement and the NFL can’t sell a smart public on refusing to arrest or prosecute for lack of evidence, while at the same time suspend him for 4-6 games for a personal conduct violation. What was the behavior he manifested to violate the rules? Could it be rape?; a crime equally as serious as dog-fighting or killing dogs. Understand these are the accusations of white females, not long ago merely an accusation of rape could get some men locked up and others lynched. What I strongly feel we are being cheated out of is the Ft. Levenworth moment simply because Roethlisberger is white, and this reluctance to charge and prosecute him has lead to a cover-up.
Chris Stevenson is a syndicated columnist, his articles also appear in the Buffalo Challenger. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook, you don’t have to join either. Respond to him on the link below.