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Seattle: We can’t just move on

Football

Content warning: The following contains discussions of domestic violence. The GIST: On Saturday, Seahawks backup offensive tackle Chad Wheeler was arrested on charges of domestic violence. The report is disturbing: his girlfriend, the alleged victim, was bleeding and strangled to the point of losing consciousness.

January 28, 2021
Source: Joe Nicholson/USA TODAY Sports
Source: Joe Nicholson/USA TODAY Sports

Content warning: The following contains discussions of domestic violence. 

On Saturday, Seahawks backup offensive tackle Chad Wheeler was arrested on charges of domestic violence. The report is disturbing: his girlfriend, the alleged victim, was bleeding and strangled to the point of losing consciousness.

  • Wheeler, who is a white man, demanded his girlfriend, who is Black, to “stand up and bow” before abusing her. One in three women experience domestic violence, and that percentage increases for Black women.
  • Mental health is also a factor: Wheeler suffers from bipolar disorder. But bipolar disorder does not cause nor justify abuse.
  • Wheeler was released on bond Tuesday morning. Last night, he was formally charged with first-degree domestic violence assault, domestic violence unlawful imprisonment and resisting arrest. 

Seahawks’ response: The Seahawks remained silent for far too long. They did not put out an official statement until midday Wednesday, four days after Wheeler was arrested. They waived him from the team soon after. 

  • Since Wheeler was a restricted free agent and not a key player on the roster, we get the vibe that the Seahawks didn’t feel it was their responsibility to release a statement sooner.
  • In the organization’s minds, this matter is settled for the Seahawks. But for this woman, the emotional trauma will last much longer. Survivors, we stand with you.