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The NFL And Adult Bullies

A bullying case rocks the NFL. We look at adult bullying in sports and more.

Miami Dolphins guard Richie Incognito (68) and tackle Jonathan Martin (71) look up from the bench in the second half of an NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints in New Orleans, Monday, Sept. 30, 2013.  Martin has resigned from the team because of alleged harassment by Incognito and other members of the team. (AP)

Miami Dolphins guard Richie Incognito (68) and tackle Jonathan Martin (71) look up from the bench in the second half of an NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints in New Orleans, Monday, Sept. 30, 2013. Martin has resigned from the team because of alleged harassment by Incognito and other members of the team. (AP)

Bullying has a new poster child: 6’5” tall and over three hundred pounds. His name is Jonathan Martin, who until last week played for the Miami Dolphins. He walked away from the team—possibly his career—for “emotional issues.”  Allegedly bullied by teammate  Richie Incognito. Nasty stuff: racial epithets. Texts. Phone calls. Death threats.  Now reports coaches might have encouraged it to toughen Martin up. It’s putting a spotlight on football culture—and workplace bulling beyond the gridiron.  Up next On Point: adult bullying in sports and more.

Guests

Andrew Abramson, NFL reporter at the Palm Beach Post. Writes the Daily Dolphin Blog. (@AbramsonPBP)

Kevin Blackistone, sports journalist and college professor. Frequent panelist for ESPN’s Around The Horn. (@ProfBlackistone)

Amanda Nickerson, associate professor in the department of counseling, school, and educational psychology at The University at Buffalo and the director of the Alberti Center for Bullying Abuse Prevention.

From The Reading List

New York Times: In Bullying Case, Questions On N.F.L. Culture — “Martin, a classics major who attended Stanford and is the son of two Harvard graduates, left the Dolphins last week after an episode in the cafeteria in which teammates stood as Martin sat, the last in a string of perceived slights. Incognito, a 30-year-old veteran with a reputation for dirty play and a history of rough behavior, was suspended indefinitely by the Dolphins late Sunday while the team and the league investigated the matter.”

Palm Beach Post: Source: Coaches told Incognito to ‘toughen up’ teammate Martin – “Dolphins guard Richie Incognito, now suspended by the club for tormenting teammate Jonathan Martin, had been told by at least one coach to help “toughen him up,” a source close to the organization told The Palm Beach Post this morning. The source said there was a general understanding among coaches, including head coach Joe Philbin, that Martin, a second-year player from Stanford, was ‘too soft.’”

Grantland: The Tumultuous Timeline of Richie Incognito — “Since arriving in Miami, Incognito has been involved in several incidents with opposing players, but he has a history of off-field issues that date back to his time at the University of Nebraska. As new details about the case with Martin and the Dolphins emerge, here is a collection of Incognito’s past transgressions that probably warrant mentioning, considering the news from this past week.”

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  • Fiscally_Responsible

    What a contrast to the camaraderie and total team spirit that was exhibited by the Boston Red Sox this year! Teams are supposed to build each other up and develop a sense of unity, not tear each other down. Even though the Red Sox might not have been as talented as the 2004 or 2007 teams, the way in which they worked together and supported each other resulted in “the sum of the parts adding up to more than the whole”. That sense of teamwork, which is exhibited too infrequently in our society, is what this and many other Boston Red Sox fans will remember most about this team.

  • HonestDebate1

    There was a time when Martin would have just clocked Incognito up side the head and be done with it. I think there is something more to the story.

    • Laurie Anne

      Way more….for some reason, I can’t help but suspect there is something going on with the sexual preferences of one or both of these players.

  • toc1234

    psst Tom, this story has totally changed in last hour….

    • SamEw

      Not really, I suppose a lot of people love the nfl and instinctively want to defend it almost no matter what. The facts are pretty much the same Incognito felt empowered to treat Martin in a way no one should have to be treated and the Dolphins lost two players and created a public embarrassment because at the very least the organization looked the other way.

  • toc1234

    I realize NPR and the media, in general, wish this was a story about race and bullying (sort of like the Gates/Cambridge police story) but doesn’t seem to be turning out that way… my condolences. Incognito just seems to just be a jackass w poor judgement and emotional issues.

    • SamEw

      How was he not bullying Martin? Saying he has poor judgment and emotional issues doesn’t change that fact.

  • J__o__h__n

    Both players will forget all about this in about twelve years.

    • hellokitty0580

      Maybe not though. And maybe if Martin gets past this particular experience, the effects on his self-esteem will last.

      • nj_v2

        You missed the snark.

  • J__o__h__n

    It is ironic that his name is incognito as he left an evidence trail of texts and voicemails.

    • truegangsteroflove

      If his name is on his game jersey it is an oxymoron. Without his name on his jersey, people would know who he is, because he would be incognito.

  • Mari McAvenia

    Oh boy, got a problem with an annoying co-worker? “Just punch him.” Is this a common approach to team discipline across the Sports Spectrum or is it peculiar to American Football, specifically?

  • Unterthurn

    This guy is not an expert. Hazing and bullying are two different things. This sounds like bullying and the coaches instigated it and tolerated it. You need bullying experts to speak up here.

    • fun bobby

      “bullying experts” that’s what’s wrong with our society

      • nj_v2

        Yeah, that’s it.

  • nj_v2

    Wow, hormone-addled, overpaid kids, playing a “game” of barely contained violence, bashing the crap out of each other to earn more money in a quarter than most of the game’s “fans” earn in a year, act badly. Who woulda thunk?

    Cheating, concussions, public subsidizing of new stadia, bullying, drugs, murder (Hernandez)…ain’t it a great country?

    Bread and circuses while the train careens down the tracks.

    • hellokitty0580

      I mean, I get what you’re saying. There are a lot of problems with the NFL, but there are also a lot of good things and good players that work for the NFL. There are players that work for charity and try to support positive endeavors within their communities. It’s just too bad that this ridiculous crap is out-shadowing the good.

      • fun bobby

        I cant imagine tebow bullies any one

    • Mari McAvenia

      Isn’t all organized sport a sort of ritualized violence? It’s old as humanity, I believe, to act out “wars” in a safe, contained area where the non-players won’t get hurt. We’ve exaggerated the whole war thing- on the home fields and abroad on the battlefronts- beyond all conscionable understanding. Profit is the great motivator for both sports and war at the end of the day.

      • hellokitty0580

        Yea, but let’s not indemnify sports completely. Sports also do a lot of good things. They lift people up and unify people on teams and within the community. And sports promote health and physical activity. There has been so much good will and happiness since the Boston Red Sox won the World Series.

        • nj_v2

          I’d suggest you need to separate the feel-good public relations from the reality of the substance.

          Huge amounts of money go to enrich a select few. Some trickles down to hotdog venders, paraphernalia hawkers, etc.

          But, really why does anyone identify with these groups of millionaires being paid to play a game as adults? It’s never made any sense to me.

          • hellokitty0580

            I don’t “identify” with them. I just appreciate what they do. I like sports. I appreciate the physical feats these people are able to accomplish. Not everyone can do these things. Do I agree with their astronomical paychecks for what they do? Not particularly. But I also don’t have cable and I don’t go to games, so my money isn’t going toward these institutions. I’m not gonna throw the baby out with the bathwater.

          • nj_v2

            You, perhaps, don’t, and i wasn’t imply necessarily that you did.

            But millions and millions, do, and they form the base of the financial pyramid that supports the entire enterprise.

          • fun bobby

            because it is part of our physiology that our testosterone levels are tied to our sports teams (which represent our warriors) success

      • nj_v2

        Track events, tennis, baseball, even soccer hardly seem as war like in comparison. Not in the same category as football, boxing, and the latest incarnations of “martial arts.”

        Popularizing and, worse, glorifying barbarism is hardly a societal benefit, except to the greedy owners, marketeers, and others profiting from the spectacle.

      • BHA_in_Vermont

        Absolutely not. Most US “sports” channels show only basketball, football, baseball, hockey (maybe soccer) as if there were no other sports in the world. Is a pool tournament ritualized violence? Poker? Curling? Gymnastics?

        Maybe you should listen to Only A Game on NPR, “sports” isn’t limited to teams of people running each other down.

        • Mari McAvenia

          Thanks! You’re absolutely right. I was thinking of the games that the Aztecs played, stuff like that, where the losing team actually did pay with their lives. Darts, anyone?

          • BHA_in_Vermont

            Not the whole team, only the captain ;)

        • fun bobby

          I love watching the 9 ball championships and the trick shot as well. not to mention motersports

  • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

    I think that Mr. Incognito should be arrested and charged. Sexual assault and harassment laws extend into the NFL. This behavior *anywhere* else would result in the same thing.

    Same goes for the “enforcers” on the field. When they break someone’s leg or give them a concussion – charge them with assault.

  • hellokitty0580

    “Man up” is crap. It’s outdated, neanderthal manner of looking at things and it makes me somewhat ashamed to be a fan of American football. Who cares how old you are or what gender you identify as? NO ONE deserves to be treated with disrespect on the job. Men need to get it together. We ALL have emotions, and most people DON’T want to be treated poorly. That’s a universal truth regardless. And if this is a part of NFL culture, then this culture needs to change. Negative pressure doesn’t make anyone better at what they do. It just leads to people cracking and being less than what they could be in the end.

    • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

      And we wonder how it is that so many players are violent against their partners, or are involved with gun violence?

  • toc1234

    class, race and bullying… NPR just cant resist shaping this story regardless of the facts that are coming out in last 24hrs…

  • Unterthurn

    Tom’s replacement is continuing the bullying by given weight to the team member’s responses. OnPoint needs a different moderator.

  • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

    Caller Ike speaks my mind. And caller Sarah, too.

  • Scott B

    Having been bullied as youth, there are some things that seem common to bullies. If they’re a jock, there seems to be a sense of entitlement to bully people. Rarely does a bully operate on his own, either having a crew of hangers- on being encouraged by others (coach, parent, supervisor, authority figure) to do so to, for whatever reason. Too many bullies actually they are doing you a favor and either showing others that you’re a weak person that deserves this treatment, or that they’re “toughening you up.” In truth, bullies have issues with being bullied (or worse) at home, and their own insecurities.

    • geraldfnord

      Well, sometimes they’re ugly shites…not that non-jocks aren’t ever u.s.s, who knows how badly any of us act were we given leave to do so…?

  • ToyYoda

    Simple question. Why is Mr. Incognito’s actions considered bullying? And why is only the NFL investigating this?

    If Mr. Incognito threatened Mr. Martin’s life and family, then this is extortion and it’s criminal. So why isn’t law enforcement looking into this?

    • BHA_in_Vermont

      Your question about bullying is odd, it is clearly bullying. Now if the question is actually “why is it not ALSO being considered extortion” (and I have to agree, forcing people to pay for your expenses IS extortion), then yep, I agree.

  • BHA_in_Vermont

    Maybe Richie Incognito’s 2012 $3.3M salary isn’t enough to cover his dinner expenses?

    The line that “it is no different than any other NFL team” speaks volumes. The NFL needs a new rule, no exceptions:
    There WILL BE NO HAZING and anyone found guilty of hazing will be tossed out of the NFL for 100 years and fined every penny they ever made in the NFL.

    In no other business would the “business conduct guidelines” allow hazing.

    Hazing is DISRESPECT. Why would anyone want to work with people who do not respect them?

    Hazing is juvenile behavior by small people with big problems.

    Incognito should never have gotten an NFL contract in the first place given his history in college.

    If the coaching staff of the Dolphins thought Martin wasn’t tough enough, they shouldn’t have hired him in the first place.

    The fact that the Dolphins coaches blew this off until the racial epithets on the phone messages came to light also speaks volumes. Maltreatment of your peers and teammates is OK, racial harassment is OK …. as long as no one finds out. The coaching staff should be fined heavily.

  • DanB

    News flash, Incognito (and all other NFL players making excuses for
    you): you are a product and a public figure. The NFL is a product. We,
    the fans, are consumers. We pay your salaries with our cable and ticket
    fees. You are therefore open to scrutiny. Saying “you don’t understand
    our culture” is like the Catholic Church saying the same thing after it
    was learned they swept the sex abuse scandal under the rug.

    • hellokitty0580

      And I’ll go a step further as a football fan saying I demand an anti-bullying/anti-hazing guideline in the NFL. I don’t want to see these players bullied and anyone who does bully needs to be banned from the game. Period.

  • Joco17

    I am a teacher, and had been teaching for 8 years, when the new high school administrator was hired. Over the course of three years, he bullied me to the point that I was vomiting between classes, and I lost 10lbs. All of his behavior fits the definition of bullying, he was abusing his authority, yet we had and have no adult bullying policy in our school district. There was no protection for me. I filed a harassment complaint, but harassment and bullying are seen as very different things: I had to be a member of a minority, physically disabled, or have him grab my butt, pretty much, for the harassment case to be successful. I am a woman, but unless I was “sexually harassed” I was not covered by our district policy. I am no longer a teacher. I have no income. This experience essentially ruined my life and affected my health. Teaching is part of my soul. I am devastated.

    • Joco17

      Right after I pushed send for my comment, I started to feel shaky and sick to my stomach… “What if he sees this? What could he do to me?” I don’t even work for the district anymore. That is what bullying does to us psychologically.

      • nj_v2

        That’s a brave a powerful testament.

        You realize you can edit/delete your comments?

        • Joco17

          I have my hands hovering over the keyboard considering it. I defended myself with the harassment case, and things just got worse for me.

          • nj_v2

            As an option, you could make the details of your story more non-specific to your particular case. For example, substitute “workplace” for “school,” “supervisor” for “high school administrator,” etc.

            If you do decide to delete, i don’t think the Disqus software will allow you to leave the space totally blank; you’ll have to leave some text there, even if it’s “deleted by author.”

          • Joco17

            I did edit it. Thank you. Isn’t that sad that I am still scared of this man and the damage he can do to my life?

          • nj_v2

            It’s sad, but understandable. It takes time to overcome these kinds of trauma. Be patient with yourself, but keep at it. Perhaps some professional counseling could help?

            Best of luck!

          • fun bobby

            you know what they say about being your own lawyer

      • fun bobby

        perhaps instead of a harassment claim you could file disability

        • Joco17

          Thank you for this advice. I am not sure what to do.

          • fun bobby

            I have had a similar experience in teaching and my advice is that even though its difficult and you want justice the best thing is to move on and let it go. it will take a while but you will get over it eventually. what’s great for me is to talk to friends who still teach public school and hearing their trials and tribulations dealing with all the idiocy and realizing how lucky I am to have gotten out.

    • Mari McAvenia

      So sorry for your losses. Yes, adult bullying can and does wreck peoples lives. I find- as a survivor of bullying- that personal resilience is required to overcome the anger, depression and grief caused, quite deliberately, by aggressive others. There is no miracle cure, sad to say. PTSD is often the result of organized adult bullying and there is no known cure for it, yet. I feel your pain. Hang in there!

      • Joco17

        Thank you for your kind response. I am very depressed, and I’ve never felt more lost or unsure of my future. That is not something I would have expected as an adult. It is shocking that one person can be so distructive. I miss teaching so much.

        • Mari McAvenia

          You WILL teach again. It may not be in the same type of classroom environment but if it’s in your blood you’ll find a path to practice your gifts. You’ve taught me something, today, and I thank you for that. “Don’t let the bastards get you down.”

          • Joco17

            Thank you so much!

          • BHA_in_Vermont

            I agree, HOPEFULLY the vast majority of school administrative staff are GOOD people who care about the education of the students they oversee and would be appalled at your situation. Talk to others in the teachers union, find school districts where treatment of ALL staff is appropriate and get yourself known there.

            I wonder if this principal was one of those “it was done to me so I get to do it to others” weak minded people. And hopefully, even though your case was tossed simply because it didn’t fit the text of the rules, the school superintendent has her/his eye on this guy and will kick him to the curb at the first legitimate (meaning it DOES fit in the box) opportunity.

            And, as “the Annies” frequently advise, get counseling. Your life shouldn’t be ruined by this, you need to understand AND BELIEVE that you are of value, that this person does NOT control you and there IS a future. Depression is NOT a thing to be taken lightly.

        • fun bobby

          get a job somewhere else. was this a middle school job?

          • Joco17

            High school.

          • fun bobby

            I have found that most teachers are trying to work through psychological issues related to the age they teach. high school teachers are people who loved it and were popular and want to relive that or they were unpopular and they want to make up for it. either way they are nuts and act like high school kids themselves. you were lucky it was not middle school

          • Joco17

            That’s very sad. I do agree that can happen, but not too often (in my experience).

            I knew I wanted to be a teacher when I was a very little girl. My grandfather, my father, and several aunts and uncles were all teachers, and inspired me greatly.

          • fun bobby

            do you teach elementary?

          • Michele

            Ahem, everyone is working through their psychological issues, not just teachers.

          • fun bobby

            of course but its funny when its so obvious which ones they are working on

          • Michele

            Quite obvious.

      • fun bobby

        there are many effective treatments for PTSD

    • BHA_in_Vermont

      Clearly the policy (and probably the policy at every school and business in the country) needs to be changed to include bullying.

      • Joco17

        I agree. When I went into the harassment case, I said, “This is a case of bullying, I don’t know where I fit into our district policy for harassment?” They told me to continue with the claim… It was determined that, “although there was clear inappropriate behavior, [I] did not fit into any of the categories (race, religion, sexual preference, disability, or sexual) under our district policy.

        • BHA_in_Vermont

          And apparently that was OK with them … doesn’t fit in the box, ignore it. HOW SAD! Would they allow the students to bully each other? I doubt it. They should have started an immediate effort to include bullying in the conduct guidelines for ALL city employees and then charged the principal under the rule.

          My personal opinion is that those in authority should be held doubly accountable for their actions BECAUSE they have control over those below them (“complain and I’ll kick your a$$ even more” threats either specific or implied), though it is never that way. For example, how many police officers speed when driving their personal vehicles for non work related reasons? I personally know of at least 2 and was told by the spouse of a court employee that when driven by officers, speeding with no “job related need” was the norm. The rules only apply to others, not to those charged with enforcing them.

    • fun bobby

      that’s quite common. you need to learn to rise above

      • nj_v2

        Better keep your day job. The counseling thing isn’t really working out for you.

        • fun bobby

          lol

          • nj_v2

            Yep, you’re just an LOL kind of guy.

            Insipid at best.

          • fun bobby

            unlike your brilliant remark

        • Mari McAvenia

          Wait until a bunch of down-votes suddenly crop up. We’ll know it wasn’t us, eh?

    • truegangsteroflove

      I spent a lifetime resisting workplace bullies. In every job I have had there have been people who tried to turn it into their own little mafia.

      You did the right thing by complaining, even if you lost. I lost many times, but it always made a difference. For most bullies, when someone stands up to them, however imperfectly, it makes a difference. For a few, it is to the death, and die they will, desperately trying to hold onto their little power over others. One guy went on a long downhill slide, his wife left him, he started drinking heavily, and finally couldn’t take being there under steadily declining status. It’s a sad case. He probably couldn’t find another job. It was his own fault.

      I worked in a lab for a well-known agricultural corporation, and the boss was abusive to everyone. I complained, and also gave subtle hints that there were severe limits to what I would put up with. Eventually, all the women who worked there complained at corporate headquarters. They responded by closing the operation down and kicking the guy upstairs. He was put on a very short leash. After that I don’t know what happened. He probably didn’t last long.

      Life is harder these days. You can’t just quit a job and expect to find another. Good luck. Your life isn’t destroyed. You have the power of your own integrity, and that is a valuable asset in the workplace.

  • truegangsteroflove

    Pro football has become a Monty Python skit with all its scandals, except that it is not a satire, but real life. The number one thing to keep in mind is that it is a business. So if you are fanatically devoted to, say, the Washington “Redskins,” you aren’t actually devoted to red-skinned people in Washington, D.C. You are devoted to the profits that go to the owners of a business.

    The NFL was popular when I was a kid, but not zealously popular. It changed with the merger of the AFL and NFL, and the introduction of the “Super Bowl.” The Super Bowl became a means of hyping the game up, making it the number one event in the entire country every year. I never watch it.

    If you take away the hype and the noise on TV, pro football is a pretty boring game. Man hike ball. Other man throw ball. Man catch ball. Man clobber other man. Man run across goal line, hesitates, then gloats. It is unnecessarily brutal, and brutality doesn’t make it any more interesting. Man are willingly maimed for life, and their lives tend to be relatively short and unhappy.

    This may be a tipping point for professional football. Since it is all about money, if fans start dropping away the money will dry up. Though this may seem a welcome result, fans may go to something worse. Civilizations in the past did with gusto.

    • fun bobby

      of course we will demand ever more violent circus

  • Fran52

    As a Bostonian who never watched football until the arrival of Tom Brady, I was under the impression that “toughness” on the field did not have to carry over into post-game life, that it was possible to be a tough player, the leader of a team, AND be a well-spoken gentleman. Watching players hug and greet members of opposing teams after games gives one the impression that at least some of these men are well-adjusted and mature by nature. My impression has recently been challenged by the behaviour of Aaron Hernandez.
    There are bad apples. Incognito’s behaviour doesn’t come as a shock in comparison to Hernandez and the situations are different, but it sounds like Incognito has repeatedly been given a pass for “bullying” throughout his career. If such behaviour is ignored, tacitly accepted, allowed to go too far, how long is it before something really serious happens?

    • hellokitty0580

      Totally agreed. I know so many people that aren’t Patriots fans get tired of hearing how great the Patriots are, but honestly, that’s what makes me such a big fan of the team: the majority of them seem to be really great guys. And it also seems that Bill Belichick doesn’t tolerate that BS. So it’s difficult to hear so many people dismiss all football as horrible, testosterone-loaded jerks when I get to hear about the NE Patriots and what nice guys most of them are. Furthermore, the Patriots have taken on players with bad reputations and those players, while they may not have stayed with the Pats, didn’t have a problem while on the team. That’s saying something.

      • nj_v2

        [ Totally agreed. I know so many people that aren't Patriots fans get tired of hearing how great the Patriots are, but honestly, that's what makes me such a big fan of the team: the majority of them seem to be really great guys. And it also seems that Bill Belichick doesn't tolerate that BS. ]

        As long as one doesn’t count the espionage/spying on other teams, Hernandez accused of murder, Alfonzo Dennard convicted of felony assault, Chad Johnson charged with domestic violence, Brandon Spikes suspended for substance abuse, Donte Stallworth killing someone while driving drunk, Albert Haynesworh charged for a road-rage incident resulting in a crash leaving another driver partially paralyzed, Dave Meggett sentenced for burglary and criminal sexual contact…

        Shall i go on?

        • BHA_in_Vermont

          Well, you know, except for those ;)

          I don’t follow professional sports – too many massively overpaid people doing something they want to do – so I will assume all of your cited instances are factual.

  • fun bobby

    looks like he was indeed soft

  • fun bobby

    at least the pinkos are identifying themselves clearly

  • kokyjo

    The name “INCOGNITO” tells the story here. Travelling “incognito” refers to a person who is trying to hide or conceal their identity. In this case, the man with this name is likely hiding a part of his self that he does not want to see and does not want others to see. A bully is generally trying to hide from his own weakness and fragility. This football player has not learned to come to terms with his self, his humanity, his mortality. He strikes out, as all bullies do, when he sees himself in others. This football player hates to see his own weakness in the face of another player SO he acts, as bullies do, to dominate it or to control it =bullying!!! The name, INCOGNITO, describes it perfectly

    • TELew

      My understanding is that Incognito is his family surname.

      • kokyjo

        So,is this just a coincidence?? I think it is quite telling that his surname and his identity are so interwoven. Personally, I would feel embarrassed with the name, Incognito. How bout Richie Unaware?? or Richie With MY Eyes Closed??? Actually, i think this is what a surname used to do for us. It identified us. Joe Stonebraker was usually the town stone mason.

        • TELew

          Yeah, it is pretty much a coincidence. A person cannot help what his or her surname is. They can change it once they reach adulthood, of course, but you are pretty much stuck with what you have.

          I have known people with surnames including Butts and Reddick. Purely accidental.

          It has been centuries (the Middle Ages) since there was any correlation between professions and surnames. There were also surnames indicating where a person was from as well as who a person’s parents were.

          As for Incognito, it is probably either Spanish, Portuguese, or Italian. I am sure there are a lot of decent people with that name. After all, one bad apple does not spoil the whole bunch.

          Your argument is silly at best.

        • J__o__h__n

          If his name is symbolic, why is he going by Richie?

  • Bminder

    if i get to play this fantasy football game, this is what i’d say we come to understand as the meaning of ‘Man Up.’ first, no one is punished, but we all understand immediately and as of this instant that hazing and bullying is now over, cold turkey, the end, for we all know what it is and it is only for our own good as well as our duty as role models to put it to an end. Man-Up can go further. sports figures could be a significant force for real good. it is simply a lot of bunk that you have to eat nails and hate the other guy in order to do your best. Man Up means to be an example of how to be really masterful at a sport and give your uttermost while also being a good sport on the field and openly enjoying the comradery of others who are masterful as well, both on your team and on other teams. this is Manning-Up. our athletes could be more than just guys who are celebrities getting rich for their physical gifts, they could be real real Men, models of humankind, showing us why we liked to think in better moments that we deserve both sides of that compound name we aspire to prove worthy of. bob minder

  • kokyjo

    I agree that the coincidence is rather silly. My more important point is that Incognito means “unaware” regardless if a person’s last name is Smith or Jones or Incognito. Incognito is about an unawareness of our own pain, fear, etc from which we all become bullies and will naturally try to suppress that which we fear when we see it in others. It’s an epidemic in American culture, in my opinion.

  • manganbr

    So what I’m hearing from NFL players (and some defensive fans) is that being a man means acting like you’re in an eighth-grade lunchroom?

  • 228929292AABBB

    The hypocrisy here is amazing. These are roman gladiators paid to beat each other to death for our amusement but we draw the line at them being rude to each other? Names may break my bones but sticks and stones will never hurt me? This reminds me of the outrage over soldiers urinating on the bodies of those they’ve slaughtered. You want a mature, sensitive society? The NFL and war have no part in it. You can’t figure out how to be that enlightened? Then stop acting surprised when your various paid attackers turn out to lack gentle qualities. I look forward to the day we’ve moved beyond primitive rituals. Until that day I’m realistic enough to realize ugly rituals require ugly behavior. Grow up.

  • Miss_Lilianna

    What I want to know is what makes someone an adult bully and how to best deal with them? I have worked with a bully in the past and it gave me so much anxiety everyday going in to work.

  • Michele

    How sad that this is anyone’s idea of being a “man”.

  • Mandy

    Dave Meggyessy called this behavior out in 1970. Our beloved NFL has been sick for a long time and it begins in the peewee leagues and gains speed right to the NFL. Gladiators? Rome loved thier blood sport too, look what happened to that society.

    • The poster formerly known as t

      Yawn. Woman and men people have been bullying each other…(yes, women bully each other) since time immemorial. It’s called hammering the nail that doesn’t fit in.

  • RolloMartins

    The NFL is crap.

  • kokyjo

    Incognito means “unaware”, hiding or concealing one’s true identity. This football player has for a long time been hiding from his true, broken, fearful self. He is not alone. All human beings face the dilemma of what to do when they encounter their own brokenness and pain and even the shame of their very own father. Incognito has a choice to become Mr. Recognito by recognizing and owning his own human pain. When he does, he will no longer need to attack the reflection of his own weakness that he sees in others like Mr. Martin. This is the beginning of real conversion and transformation. You can do it Richie. Step UP

  • TELew

    Offensive linebacker?

    • geraldfnord

      You might of noticed it, but you won the Internet that day.

      • TELew

        Cool!

  • Regular_Listener

    I must say this story made me laugh out loud. What is next, bullying in professional wrestling? Huh? You said something offensive and hostile to me? You bully! Call in the authorities! Excuse me, I have to go out and clobber this big strong guy with all my might.

ONPOINT
TODAY
Apr 25, 2014
President Barack Obama and ASIMO, an acronym for Advanced Step in Innovative MObility, bow to each other during a youth science event at the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation, known as the Miraikan, in Tokyo, Thursday, April 24, 2014. (AP)

Guns in Georgia. Obama in Asia. Affirmative Action. And Joe Biden in Ukraine. Our weekly news roundtable.

Apr 25, 2014
In this Saturday, Aug. 11, 2012 file photo, employees of the New Hampshire state health department set up a temporary clinic at the the middle school in Stratham, N.H., to test hundreds of people for hepatitis C related to an outbreak at nearby Exeter Hospital. A new drug, Sovaldi, is said to successful treat more than 90 percent of Hepatitis C patients. (AP)

Super expensive miracle drugs. How much can we afford to pay?

RECENT
SHOWS
Apr 24, 2014
A Buddhist monk lights the funeral pyre of Nepalese mountaineer Ang Kaji Sherpa, killed in an avalanche on Mount Everest, during his funeral ceremony in Katmandu, Nepal, Monday, April 21, 2014.  (AP)

A Sherpa boycott on Everest after a deadly avalanche. We’ll look at climbing, culture, life, death and money at the top of the world.

 
Apr 24, 2014
Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento, left, talks with Sen. Ed Hernandez, D-Covina at the Capitol in Sacramento, Calif., Monday, April 21, 2014. Hernandez proposed a constitutional amendment that would ask voters to again allow public colleges to use race and ethnicity when considering college applicants. The proposal stalled this year after backlash from Asian Americans. (AP)

California as Exhibit A for what happens when a state bans affirmative action in college admissions. We’ll look at race, college and California.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Up At Everest Base Camp, ‘People Still Don’t Know The Ramifications’
Thursday, Apr 24, 2014

With a satellite phone call from Mount Everest’s Base Camp, climber and filmmaker David Breashears informs us that the Everest climbing season “is over.”

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The Week In Seven Soundbites: April 18, 2014
Friday, Apr 18, 2014

Holy week with an unholy shooter. South Koreans scramble to save hundreds. Putin plays to the crowd in questioning. Seven days gave us seven sounds.

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Our Week In The Web: April 18, 2014
Friday, Apr 18, 2014

Space moon oceans, Gabriel García Márquez and the problems with depressing weeks in the news. Also: important / unnecessary infographics that help explain everyone’s favorite 1980′s power ballad.

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