NFL Replacement Refs: Blaming The Victim

The First Essential Scary Truth

The replacement NFL referees have finally gone and done it: they’ve committed a ‘mistake’ that cost a team a game.  The game in question was the Monday night affair between the Seattle Seahawks and Green Bay Packers.  The play a Hail Mary pass at the end of the game thrown by Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson in the general direction of five Packers defensive backs and four Seahawk receivers resulting in a non-called Offensive Pass Interference on Seattle wideout Golden Tate and the pass ruled a dubious Simultaneous catch by the replacement refs.

Once a Simultaneous catch is called, the offense is awarded possession of the ball.  In this case, the ball was ruled a catch by Golden Tate and a touchdown.  Let loose the fateful football anger.  According to ESPN over 70,000 calls were logged by the NFL operators in a 24 hour period; not counting the millions of Tweets, Facebook updates, bar arguments and text screeds sent by football fans.

As I drove back to LA from Phoenix, I flipped from Phoenix sports talk station to sports talk station until I crossed the border into California and then from Los Angeles sports talk station to sports talk station listening to every caller bemoan the officiating and demand a quick resolution to the current referee lockout.  Even Rush Limbaugh weighed in on the replacement referees, (“The NFL has never been better!) although in typical twitting fashion, Limbaugh said he’d like to see the refs left in place so more people would tune in to the football games to see what might or might not unfold.

What none of these callers, social networkers or talk show hosts brought up was why were the referees in a position to award a game to one of the teams?  Football is a game of domination.  If a team does not dominant it’s opponent, that team allows an outside influence, in this case the replacement referees, to dictate who will win the game.  The real fault on Monday night (and Thursday and Sunday) lay with the Packers and Seahawks (and the other NFL teams) inability to force the others to capitulate to their will.

So dear fan of America’s Fascist Ground Acquisition Sport, do not blame the replacement refs or Roger Goddell or the way the sunsets over Ford Field; blame your team for not being able to force the enemy to submit.

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