Domestic Violence At The Super Bowl? Heck Yeah It Will Be Addressed, In This PSA


During the 2014 NFL season one of the most talked about things was not who would make it into the Super Bowl, but domestic violence. The Ray Rice scandal which centered around CCTV footage of the former Baltimore Ravens player dragging his unconscious then-fiance out of an elevator surfaced and went public, forcing the organization to face up to many other domestic violence allegations that have dogged the sport for many years, and also address concerns from fans and critics about how they have been handling it internally.

In October a new PSA starring some prominent NFL players was released by non-profit organization to send a loud and clear message that domestic violence will not be tolerated, but more than that, issuing a call-out that the culture has to change, and it has to change from within. It was an important move, but of course we have yet to see the fruit of this new direction as things only came to a head in the past year.

With the announcement of Katy Perry performing “female empowerment” anthems at this year’s Super Bowl in Arizona, it seems the NFL is not done yet when it comes to cracking down on domestic violence. A petition was started on January 20 by a woman in Maryland named Gretchen Tome who wanted the NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell to agree to air an anti-domestic violence PSA during the Superbowl.


She said that while the aforementioned NFL PSA has been airing during the football season, it needs to go one step further.

“The Super Bowl averages 111.5 million viewers and women make up almost half that audience. The big game is the NFL’s chance to show they’re serious about combating domestic violence by airing an ad that challenges families gathered around the television set to talk about the issue,” writes Gretchen.

“It’s also their biggest opportunity to show survivors they are not alone and let them know where they can get help. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has said he wants the league to be a leader in combating domestic violence in America. The Super Bowl is the NFL’s chance to turn words into action.”

Well it seems her petition has been answered, and perhaps the NFL was planning this all along, because for the first time ever, a commercial dealing with domestic violence will air during the Superbowl on Sunday, Feb 1st.


The coolest part is that the NFL donated air time to this commercial (brands normally pay millions of dollars for a coveted Superbowl ad spot!!) and also footed the bill for all the production costs for the video below.

“We hope this No More PSA will bring Americans together — on a day families and friends spend together — in the effort to end domestic violence and sexual assault,” No More Director Virginia Witt told Rolling Stone.

In the PSA, a woman calls 911 but pretends to order a pizza so that her abuser is not aware of what she is doing. It is said to be based off real live events. The video below is quite haunting, but this is exactly what we need during the Super Bowl. We NEED a mood-killer to make the nation stop what it is doing and remember what really lies beneath.

The NFL cannot afford to bury this scandal any longer, because it is not only a crime in America, domestic violence is a human rights violation.

Another group creating a stir with an anti-domestic violence video is human rights advocacy group Ultraviolet who created a video issuing the call-out for NFL commissioner Roger Goodell to be let go from his position. The #GoodellMustGo PSA shows a football player warming up for a tackle, then we see him running, until he bowls over an innocent woman standing on the field. Not quite as haunting as the PSA, but the more messages we have out there, the greater chance we have of changing the culture, and infiltrating an industry that has shamefully allowed this crime against women to happen for far too long.

The Super Bowl is normally considered a day of reckoning for two teams who have fought hard to reach the end, but this season it is a day of reckoning for the entire industry. Word.

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  1. Pingback: And The Grammy For Best Performance Of The Night Goes To...President Obama?!

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