On Sports, Violence, and Pacifism?

This week my feature on the NFL and violence appeared arguing that the NFL’s rule changes are not only good for business, they are also good for Christians.  Read below:


On March 2, 2012 the NFL announced the findings of an investigation into the “bounty system” operated by, then New Orleans Saints defensive coordinator, Gregg Williams.  Since 2009, Mr. Williams operated aprogram of pay-for-pain wherein defensive players were given bonuses for intentionally hurting opposing players.  In the process of indefinitely suspending Mr. Williams, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell also suspended the New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton without pay for the entire 2012 season.

This decision by Goodell highlights an ethical odyssey of the NFL in the last decade.  The question at hand: How do you balance a business of violence with long-term health care for employees?  By slapping the Saints franchise, Mr. Goodell defined the future of the NFL’s business model–violence must not interfere with profitability, especially in light of perceptions of fairness and the reality of rising health care costs.

And yet a second ethical dilemma faces Christian fans of the NFL: Should these policies affect the way that Christians watch the NFL?  Allow me to weigh in on both questions.


To read more, click here.

About Doug Hankins

Although not a Christian in his youth, Doug came to believe in Jesus during his teenage years. When not playing sports or pastoring Doug is probably spending time with his wife, reading a good book, or drinking some hot tea. Doug's first book Dawson Trotman: In His Own Words is available wherever books are sold. You can follow Doug on twitter.
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