Rice was initially suspended for two games when reports first surfaced that he’d assaulted then-fiancee Janay Palmer in an elevator at the now-shuttered Revel Casino in Atlantic City. But the Ravens canceled his contract and the NFL suspended him indefinitely when a full video of the incident, posted by TMZ, showed him knocking out Palmer, who is now his wife, then dragging her limp body from the elevator car and dumping her in the hallway.
Carson, who spoke by phone with Steve Malzberg on Newsmax TV Monday, was asked if the team’s and the league’s actions were the “right move?”
Carson, a former professor and director of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore, said that he hoped the league would get some help for Rice. Then he added:
“Let’s not all jump on the bandwagon of demonizing this guy. He obviously has some real problems. And his wife obviously knows that because she subsequently married him. So they both need some help.”
Perhaps Carson was speaking as a doctor, offering his medical opinion, but some, including Mediaite, have suggested that he was defending Rice. (And perhaps judging Janay Rice?)
After talking about the Rice case — and before moving on to President Obama’s response to the ISIS threat — Malzberg asked Carson about the tempest in the NBA around Atlanta Hawks majority owner Bruce Levenson. Recently e-mails have surfaced in which he laments that too many black fans might be scaring off white hoops lovers and sinking his franchise. Levenson has announced they he would sell his stake in the team.
Carson responded: “I say that we have a tendency to try everybody in the media on the basis of sound bites and video clips. And it really is pretty stupid. And it goes back to my whole war on political correctness.”
Late Monday, White House press secretary Josh Earnest issued this statement in response to the video of Rice’s actions:
“The President is the father of two daughters. And like any American, he believes that domestic violence is contemptible and unacceptable in a civilized society,” Earnest said in a statement. “Hitting a woman is not something a real man does, and that’s true whether or not an act of violence happens in the public eye, or, far too often, behind closed doors. Stopping domestic violence is something that’s bigger than football – and all of us have a responsibility to put a stop to it.”