Reading The Pictures is dedicated to the analysis of news photos and media images.
September 14, 2015

Past the Reminders: The Life-Threatening NFL

If the image of NY Jet, Lorenzo Maudlin, his head kept stationary and his body fixed to a board, is sickening, and the video of Cleveland’s Josh McCown getting hit in the head and then completely spun around in the air is dramatically perverse, there’s something more insidious about yesterday’s screenshot of the unconscious Miami Dolphin tight end, Dion Sims.

Given the swollen cloud hanging over the NFL as it commences another life-threatening season, we’re way past the point where an image like this — in that frozen moment where the athlete lies stricken but before the attendants arrive — simply serves as a reminder of the problem. As the bodies pile up, the image, instead, is like a mirror, reflecting the public’s complicity and collusion.

Famous, at this point, is the country’s passivity in the face of violence.

(image 1: screenshot via @ddiamond via Forbes. linked photo: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images. caption: Lorenzo Mauldin #55 of the New York Jets is taken off the field after an injury against the Cleveland Browns at MetLife Stadium on Sunday, Sept. 13, 2015 in East Rutherford, N.J.)

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