But the latest scandal might be the last straw. The NFL just fined the team $10 million as a result of the sexual misconduct that was discovered within the organization.
Paying $10 million is substantial. But in the #MeToo era, should the NFL do more?
The Washington Football Team faces accusations of sexual misconduct in the workplace
This investigation started last year when 40 women came forward and described the workplace environment of the Washington Football Team as “toxic and demeaning” to women. They told investigators how they not only had to deal with sexual misconduct but sexual discrimination, as well.
After reviewing the findings of Beth Wilkinson, whom the NFL hired to investigate the accusations, the league released a statement regarding its investigation into the matter:
“Based on Wilkinson’s review, the Commissioner concluded that for many years the workplace environment at the Washington Football Team, both generally and particularly for women, was highly unprofessional. Bullying and intimidation frequently took place and many described the culture as one of fear, and numerous female employees reported having experienced sexual harassment and a general lack of respect in the workplace.”
Owner Daniel Snyder took full responsibility for what had taken place within the organization, according to Fox Sports.
“I feel great remorse for the people who had difficult, even traumatic experiences while working here. I’m truly sorry for that,” Snyder said. “I can’t turn back the clock, but I promise that nobody who works here will ever have that kind of experience again, at least not as long as Tanya and I are owners of this team.”
Despite the heavy fine, the franchise didn’t lose any draft picks, nor were there any suspensions involved. Which begs the question: Did the NFL do enough?
The NBA forces out Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling
When former Los Angeles Clippers governor Donald Sterling made racist comments seven years ago, the NBA didn’t waste any time trying to find another person or group to buy the team.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver not only fined Sterling but imposed a lifetime ban on him attending NBA games, owner’s meetings, and any other NBA-related activities. The action pretty much ended Sterling’s governorship of the Clippers.
Sterling, in a recorded conversation with his then-girlfriend, said he didn’t like her being around or associating with Black people.
The NFL can learn a lesson from how the NBA handled this kind of situation.
Should the NFL force Daniel Snyder to sell the team?
Unlike Sterling, Snyder seems to have shown remorse in this situation. He even agreed with the NFL’s punishment. However, if the 56-year old knew this was going on for a long time, is his apology genuine? Or is he just saying what the NFL wants to hear?
It seems like Snyder appointing his wife as the co-CEO alongside him is just for optics. Will that be enough for the NFL?
For now, it seems it is.