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NFL-related incidents spotlight domestic violence, alcohol abuse

The National Football League has attracted a considerable amount of attention over the past week-plus for actions that transcend the professional gridirons of its players.

Before a game in Kansas City on Sunday, December 2, a Kansas City Chiefs player murdered his girlfriend and then committed suicide with a gun at the stadium in front of his coach and general manager. And last Saturday, in a Dallas suburb, a Dallas Cowboys player crashed his car, killing a teammate. The driver was charged with intoxication manslaughter.

In televised comments following the domestic violence issue, commentator Bob Costas was both praised and excoriated for his statements criticizing the laxity of American gun laws and the ready availability of guns that are used in crimes.

A rival network, CBS, drew harsh criticism the same day for not leading its sports programming with candid acknowledgment and some discussion of the murder-suicide.

A leading personality for CBS sports, anchorman James Brown, went far toward dampening such criticism this past Sunday when he issued a personal on-air opinion regarding domestic abuse and alcohol abuse and the need for men to "become more meaningfully engaged in helping to change" such behaviors.

Brown says that the recent tragic NFL-related incidents "have cast a harsh spotlight on a pair of major societal issues." He states that the events serve as "a call to us men" to speak up forthrightly about such matters and seek to make a difference in reducing violence related to domestic disturbances and alcohol use.

"The silence is deadly," he says, in noting that three women on average are killed by their husbands or boyfriends each day in the United States

Source: Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, "CBS' Brown calls on men to take ownership of domestic violence issue," Bob Wolfley, Dec. 9, 2012

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