The Musers to a smallish extent, and The Hardline, especially Corby, to a much larger extent (or, as Corby might put it, to the largest extent I have ever, ever seen in the history of time), expressed the view that the revelation that the Saints were paying players for inflicting hard hits, more for injuries, more for stretcher casualties, is not such a big deal. Something that, apparently, everyone knew or must have known or probably knew, and it happens all the time, and across the league.
I'd never before heard that any team, much less many teams, compensated players for causing injury. I certainly never heard it on The Ticket. I'm wondering then, why it is such a gigantic story now, and why those who are shrugging their shoulders over it happening on The Little One have never let us in on it. I'm not saying Corby or anyone else had knowledge of Greg Williams's actions or should have been compelled to report on particular verified instances of pay-for-injury -- I'm saying that if the general practice were widespread and known or even reasonably believed by Our Heroes, they might have opined on it somewhere along the line.
Conclusion: This may be an instance of ubercoolness by those Heroes of ours, not wanting to seem shocked by the things that are shocking to Those of Us Not in The Know.
If not: What other amazingly scandalous but unreported things about sports do you suspect that you're not telling us?
*For new Confessors: STD = Scorching Ticket Disquisition
The blazing HSO is this:
The intentional causing of injury to another is a crime. Not just hard hits during a sporting event, but any kind of battery with the intent to injure. Intent being the difference between a crime and injury inflicted in the normal course.
I know Roger Goodell is going to come down on the Saints and maybe other of Williams's stops like a ton of bricks, and that's fine, I hope the Saints and responsible persons, including Sean Payton, get flayed, and where I don't have a dog in the hunt I sentimentally root for the Saints.
Wikipedia reports that since 1969, there have been 12 instances of criminal prosecution for injuries intentionally inflicted during hockey games, almost all of them in Canada. Many if not most of them resulted in acquittals or minor punishment. I'm suspecting that this is because in many cases, the difficulty in proving intent is key, and there may even be some instances of provocation by the injured. And fighting is an expected commonplace in the NHL
What is being charged now in the NFL goes way beyond this. This isn't "heat of battle" violence, this isn't injuries inflicted during a donnybrook, this is premeditated battery. The scheme of promising in advance to pay for it on completion makes it particularly heinous, just as murder for hire is always first-degree murder -- not just manslaughter.
I'm not a criminal lawyer or expert on the topic, but it's my impression that there are two things that make crimes hard to charge and prove, other than the actual commission of the mayhem in question: the difficulty of proving intent, and the reasonable doubt standard. It's what kept guys like Jack Tatum and Conrad Dobler out of prison.
But if today's accounts are to be credited, both intent and proof beyond a reasonable doubt would be a cinch in this case.
And to this, you can add the additional aggravating circumstances of conspiracy.
Sporting fields, and the games held there, are not beyond the jurisdiction of civil authority.
So if I were District Attorney Leon A. Cannizzaro, District Attorney for Orleans Parish -- and, I suppose, if I didn't care about being re-elected -- I'd be seeking indictments against some coaches and players and coaches, and putting some of them the hell away.
Dinner is served.
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