The Case of Joe Mixon
As I watched a short video of a man forcefully punching a woman, I was speechless. I could not believe what I just watched. Oklahoma’s running back, Joe Mixon, just violently struck a woman and left without any sympathy. I’m still in shock.
The question still remains: Did Joe Mixon deserve to get kicked off the team, or should he have been allowed to stay?
The video, which was released just over four hours ago, will define two humans for the rest of their lives. Amelia Molitor and Joe Mixon will never be known by their names anymore. She is, “the woman who was punched by Joe Mixon”, and he is the “woman beater from Oklahoma.” As a young adult, it’s hard to realize that.
Bob Stoops and various University officials punished Joe Mixon by removing him from the team befor his true-freshman season. To this day, he still has to follow guidelines that the University of Oklahoma has set. These guidelines are not public knowledge, but are to an addition to his grade requirements and other sorts of student conduct. To this point, he has not had any issues that would cause him to compromise this undisclosed agreement.
In an interview with the Oklahoman, it shows that Molitor has also been punished — victim shaming is just one of the everyday issues she’s incurred since that night. Amelia deleted all of her social media platforms due to constant personal attacks. In addition, her former police mugshots were being posted everywhere for everyone to see. She was punished as well; She did not feel like she mattered anymore.
The punch. Something that has been talked about for over two years, has finally reached its peak. The video was released and the backlash upon it has been as expected. Opinions on the incident are being thrown everywhere on social media, if you couldn’t tell.
Would it have been wrong to let go of Mixon after the incident? Absolutely not. They could have easily rid themselves of the situation.
Should Joe Mixon have been allowed to stay as a student-athlete at the University of Oklahoma?
Whenever Joe Mixon decided to break Amelia Molitor’s jaw, he forced his head coach and administrators to make a very tough decision. Instead of expelling Joe Mixon from Oklahoma, they kept him. They forced him to abide by a set of rules and guidelines that allowed him to grow as not just a student-athlete, but as a human being.
The alternative, Joe Mixon could be at UCLA, or any other school back home with no rules, no guidance, and no discipline outside of sitting out due to a transfer rule.
Mixon could be somewhere else seemingly unpunished, allowed to take up all the extra curricular activities some college students choose to do during their spare time. Maybe most of all, he wouldn’t have face the backlash he does living in Oklahoma. Instead, Stoops took him in– He took on the responsibility of ensuring he was accountable, keeping him out of trouble, and answering the media’s questions when they commonly surfaced. From reports, Joe has kept his nose clean and embraced the requirements Bob placed on him two years ago. Further praise has come from Offensive Coordinator, Lincoln Riley who goes as far to say that Mixon will be a team captain before his time is done at Oklahoma.
If Joe Mixon left for another school and had another incident, then Bob Stoops, Joe Castiglione, and David Boren would have accomplished nothing. Nothing at all. He had just turned 18 a couple hours earlier. He made a HORRIBLE life decision. He ruined the public’s viewing of him as a person in the community. What would have kept him from repeating? If he had left and done something in the same light elsewhere, then it would have reflected upon Bob Stoops and company.
This situation has brought down the University, Bob Stoops, Joe Castiglione, and David Boren; it will be a permanent scar for the football program and Oklahoma Athletics. At the same time, scars tell a story. Oklahoma stuck their neck out for a kid that made an appalling decision and Mixon will continue paying the price for it. However, not everything is negative. Since the incident, Joe has represented the University just like any other student has. Outside of a parking ticket, he has followed all necessary and mandated guidelines. Stoops and company have slowly but surely, been turning Mixon’s life around. Could Joe have done it elsewhere? Sure. However the staff knew him more than anyone else and understood the amount of effort it would take to help him.
Let me make this absolutely certain: I do not condone hitting a woman. Nor do I condone using racial slurs. The video is terrifying. It shows what a football player can do the common person. With that being said, I still stand behind Oklahoma’s decision to keep Joe Mixon in spite of the recent events that have unfolded tonight. They allowed a young man to grow under their tutelage, and I believe that should not go unnoticed.
Violence against women is an issue. Abusing our right of freedom of speech is an issue. This situation is bringing even more awareness to both– Remember that this is all began with a choice of words from both sides. Take a second to think about what you’re saying. Choose your words wisely. These are issues that aren’t exclusive to Oklahoma and it will take us all together to put an end to these social problems. Educating our young men and women that violence is never a solution, physical or verbal — which is something that we all can agree on.