A reader lends his expertise to the Adrian Peterson case:
I am a psychologist who works primarily with very young children and their families. It is disturbing to me, especially reading the comments sections of sites that are covering this story, to see how few people seem to have gotten the memo about the impact of early violence on the developing brain. While Mr. Peterson’s son was being whipped, and for some long time thereafter, his nervous system was being flooded with stress hormones (cortisol is the primary culprit). Shame, anger, and fear states cause the body to respond this way, as stress hormones can also help mobilize us into fight or flight states when danger is near. The problem is that sustained, repeated exposure to these hormones causes structural changes to the developing brain, including the hippocampus and the amygdala – structures that are responsible for emotion processing and memory.
The result? A nervous system that is “primed” to scan for danger and ready to fight to protect itself rather than one that can safely engage in play, exploration and learning (these brain states are incompatible). Research is very clear that kids who are exposed to this kind of violence (fear states) are much more likely to be violent as they grow up.
So you want to have fewer future Ray Rices clocking their partners? Figure out ways to keep kids like Adrian Peterson’s safe.
Meanwhile, Margaret Hartmann flags yet another story of an NFL player in trouble for domestic violence:
Police tell the Arizona Republic that the incidents [involving Arizona Cardinals running back Jonathan Dwyer] took place over two days in late July but were not reported until September 11. … Dwyer was booked on suspicion of aggravated assault against his wife for fracturing a bone and aggravated assault against his child for throwing the shoe. He could also be charged with preventing a 911 call and damaging property. Dwyer’s wife and child left the state shortly after the incidents. He admitted that they were arguing, but denied that any physical abuse took place.
Doktor Zoom of Wonkette notes:
Dwyer is actually the Cardinals’ second player with a domestic violence charge: Linebacker Daryl Washington pleaded guilty in March to assaulting his girlfriend, but he was already indefinitely suspended from the team for an earlier substance-abuse violation. No NFL discipline for him on the domestic assault charge yet.
Meanwhile, Rich Lowry defends the NFL from all the bad publicity lately:
[T]he media has lost its collective mind. It’s as if the people who controlled CNN’s programming in the aftermath of the disappearance of Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 have been put in charge of all press coverage of the NFL, and brought to the task the same sense of proportion, good taste and dignity that characterized the network’s handling of the missing plane. The coverage of the Rice elevator video managed to combine moralistic preening with voyeuristic pandering. Everyone on TV professed to be so outraged by domestic violence that they had to show a clip of a woman getting viciously punched, over and over again (until many of the networks finally recoiled from their own overkill).
Read all of the recent Dish on domestic violence here.