Violence Against Umpires

Dennis Putnam dap1 at MINDSPRING.COM
Thu Dec 23 17:16:21 MST 1999


At 06:56 PM 12/22/99 -0800, you wrote:
>None of this nonesense surprizes me. I have seen big,
>dumb, stupid jocks pampered from junior high on up.
>They get special treatment all the time, and some of
>these arrogant troglodites literally believe they are
>above us hoi polloi. The brute was just doing his
>brutish thing, like a bigger animal picking on a
>smaller one.

This was my immediate reaction until I received further information.
It seems that the ref intentionally threw that flag in Orlando
Brown's face. Of course he did not intentionally try to hit his eye
but apparently it is common for refs to throw flags at players. In
this case Brown was not the player charged with the penalty but he
had the flag thrown at him anyway. Brown also has a family history of
eye problems and his father was blind as result of cataracts or
glyocoma. Brown is understandably sensitive to eye injuries inflicted
unnecessarily. The Dr.s are not sure if Brown will suffer permanent
vision imparement.

I am not trying to excuse Brown's behavior as there is no excuse for
what he did. However, he is not exactly the monster originally
portrayed. In a fit of panic he lost control of his temper and should
suffer the consequences. However, it seems to me that if one throws a
BB filled hanky in someones face it is forseeable that an eye injury
could occur. This meets the legal definition of negligence and a
decent lawyer could win a suit against the ref in Brown's favor. That
still would not mean the ref would lose a counter suit against Brown
for simple battery.

Things are never as simple as they seem.

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