Keep the lockerroom antics in the Lockerroom Context
Posted by Pete D. Camarillo
I’m glad that Terrelle Pryor helped put The “Dolphin Bullying scandal” into perspective. In an interview with Pro Football talk, Pryor said that he sees the bullying incident as the responsibility of team leaders specifically the Quarterback.
We all understand that bullying can happen anymore, regardless of shape or profession anyone can be victimized by bullying. I think its foolish to turn a blind eye to lots of the hazing that goes on in an NFL locker room. In general, football is a hyper masculine culture, where ‘boys will boys.’
As a former football player I understand what kind of banter goes on in the comfort of teammates. I think 80% of the things said are put into the context of jokes, because that is how men socialize. It can only be worse in a culture like the NFL because men are taught to be nasty and aggressive. This kind of behavior has been accepted throughout college and high school. Despite NFL players large checks and professional atmosphere they are still accustomed to a hyper masculine culture.
All that being said, it shouldn’t be alarming to hear about some of the antics that have allegedly taken place in the Dolphins Locker room
Many of the Dolphin Players and come out to say that Incognito is not a bad teammate nor is he a racist. I don’t think that is to turn against Martin more than it is a way to suggest that many of the teammates didn’t realize how bad the situation. Since, little boys many of them have been desensitived to racial slurs, hazing, and insults. While Martin may or not have been singled out, I don’t buy that Martin couldn’t have found one confidant amongst the 70 plus players in the lockerroom. Maybe Martin bottled up many of the emotions he was dealing with, but he plays one of the most physical games. He should have used the physical outlet of the game and taken it head up with Incognito in drills. Once things really got bad, he should have approached Incognito man to man, where there would have been a physical confrontation or a mutual understanding. Alternatively he could have approached a team leader. He could have approached one the defensive players who could punched Incognito in the face.
I guess my point is simply, hazing in the NFL happens.Rather its carrying the bags or stupid haircuts, hazing happens in a hyper masculine culture. The only way to reverse it by having the team leaders handle it internally. 12,000 vegas trips and every week strip club visits might have taken it to far. However as for the racial slurs and verbal harassment. One of the 70 people in the locker room should have risen to the occasion if things were as bad as they sound. But they didn’t probably because they didn’t see anything they haven’t seen since they were kids. Therefore all this info coming out about racial slurs, should stay in the lockerroom, because only the participants in that lockerroom understand the context and acceptability of those words. I’m not condoning anyone threatening, calling someone a racial slur, or having sex with one of their family members. We can’t act like these things are unheard of, and we can’t pretend like the context couldn’t have been a joke, because lockerroom cultures are different than anything mainstream. Obscenities in the real world are just everyday pieces of the NFL lockerroom.The more that develops from the Martin case will only be more of opening the can of worms that is the NFL Lockerroom.