Roethlisberger deserves to lose part of season

June 1, 2010 — by Roy Bisht

On July 17, 2009, Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger was accused of sexually abusing a 31-year-old woman in his hotel room in Lake Tahoe. After leading his team to multiple Super Bowl victories, Roethlisberger was one of the most heroic figures in Steelers’ franchise history. Even though Roethlisberger denied the claim, his image was tarnished. He had spent all his time since trying to re-build his fan base. But that all changed on March 5 of this year.

While Roethlisberger was working on rebuilding his image, another sexual abuse allegation surfaced, this time from a 20-year-old college student in Georgia. The NFL responded by slamming down a six-game suspension and requiring Roethlisberger to undergo “professional behavior evaulation” along with possible counseling. Although many argue that such a punishment is too severe, Roethlisberger deserves to have a chunk of his season taken away from him after two allegations of the same crime.

After his first accusation last year, Roethlisberger was already on thin ice with the league and he knew it. Even for his first offense, some would argue that he even deserved to be punished back then. With that being said, there is no absolutely no excuse for a second rape accusation to surface. Sure, Roethlisberger has never been convicted; however, by putting himself in the same position twice, he deserves to be punished.

In the first case, Roethlisberger allegedly tricked a woman into entering his hotel room, and when she attempted to leave, he blocked the door and grabbed the woman, forcibly acting upon her. In the second abuse case, Roethlisberger was accused of sexually assaulting the victim in a woman’s bathroom in a nightclub. He allegedly caused multiple lacerations and bruises in multiple areas of the woman’s body. Anytime something this serious happens, severe punishment is needed.
Roethlisberger knew what he was doing and he knew the punishment. He had already done it before. Roethlisberger was incorrect in not only his actions, but also his mental processes on both of those nights.

Even though the charges were dropped, it is still Roethlisberger’s fault that he put himself in this situation twice. He should be able to easily prevent this from happening because as a professional athlete, he should have high standards for his off-field behavior. He may not be officially guilty, but by putting himself in this situation, Roethlisberger is completely responsible for all of it.

Being a young athlete, I was not at all pleased with Roethlisberger’s actions. As a professional athlete, he should hold himself with classful standards, and he failed to do that again. Seeing role model after role model embarrass themselves in the public eye is discouraging at best.

The league made the correct decision in punishing Roethlisberger the way he deserved. For the second time, Roethlisberger sexually violated someone for his own desires, and this time he really paid for it. Not only has he been suspended for six games, forced to undergo counseling, and lost many fans, but in the words of the rapper Eminem, he serves as a lesson for professional athletes not to “get as rowdy as Roethlisberger in a bathroom stall” unless they are ready to face the consequences.

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