Kareem Hunt signing by Browns highlights differences of opinion about NFL consequences for committing violence against women

Photo of Browns’ RB Kareem Hunt from tampabay.com.

Here we go again. When the Cleveland Browns signed troubled running back Kareem Hunt on Monday social media instantly erupted.

To be sure, the Browns signing Hunt has many layers of outrage one can pull out of this dubious move by general manager John Dorsey. So let’s just start with the appropriateness of signing Kareem Hunt in the first place – when discipline for him committing an act of violence against a woman hasn’t even been decided by the NFL at this time.

According to ESPN’s Pat Manamon, Dorsey’s ‘evidence’ for deciding to throw his unwavering support behind Kareem Hunt seems weak and frankly quite alarming.

“I want everybody to know we have done extensive research in regards to this case, this player,” Dorsey told reporters during media availability Monday. “He understands and takes full responsibility for the egregious act he committed. He is extremely remorseful for his actions.”
Dorsey said he talked to many people about Hunt, but did not talk to the woman, nor did he talk to groups that deal with domestic violence or violence against women. He said he did not reach out to the woman.


True remorse requires monumental amounts of work to process through the deep layers to get at the innermost core of any violent episode. For all the anger directed at Ray Rice in the past, the price he paid losing his career was actually a necessary step in his healing process.

From my vantage point as a student of human behavior, rewarding Mr. Hunt with a path to reclaiming his stardom before his inner work has been properly processed seems like a bad mistake. We shall see, but suffice it to state I’m glad the player isn’t on my team.

And before I go on… if anyone starts bellyaching on Twitter about giving someone a second chance, put a sock in it. There ARE behaviors in life which have serious irreversible consequences. This should definitely be one of them.

Photo of Cleveland Browns’ GM John Dorsey from clutchpoints.com.

The truth of the matter is, I can’t decide if I’m more outraged the Browns and John Dorsey would choose to sign Hunt without properly vetting the situation by speaking with all parties involved, or by the fact they just sent the worst possible message to their female fan base about violence against women.

I would give my eye teeth to know what Kim Pegula thinks about all of this.

At what point does the treatment of vulnerable populations of people become as politically important to the NFL as protecting against racial discrimination?

To assume a few months of therapy and self-reflection is enough to rehabilitate a person who chooses to inflict violence on another person is not only naive, it’s dangerous.

A wyo-pox on John Dorsey for this short-sighted and paternalistic statement that he could possibly be in a position to assess someone’s level of repentance, let alone their risk factors to become a repeat offender– especially after rewarding Hunt with job security no matter how many pats on the wrist the NFL decides to dole out for this latest stain on their legacy.

Editor’s babble: Gahhhh… and I could even go on about how signing Hunt may affect locker room culture but I can’t get past wondering why Dorsey is bringing all of this into the Browns organization in the first place. If you can stand the wyo-rants… you can find me on Twitter @RobynMundyWYO.

Disclaimer: These views solely belong to the author and may or may not be the same as the owners of the BillsMafia.com website.

About Robyn Mundy

Robyn Mundy is Editor-in-Chief of the BillsMafia blog at BuffaloFAMbase.com. She's a retired oncology nurse & psychotherapist who loves to write about her life-long passion for the Buffalo Bills, and occasionally something of clinical or social relevance. Robyn lives with her husband Gary and their dogs in the foothills of the Big Horn Mountains in Wyoming. Robyn is also a proud founding sponsor. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynMundyWYO.