This video is unavailable.

Watch Queue

TV Queue

Watch QueueTV Queue


Watch Queue
TV Queue

Guns, Football, Macho Culture Didn't Kill Jovan Belcher's Girlfriend. Jovan Belcher Did.

Want to watch this again later?

Sign in to add this video to a playlist.

Like this video?

Sign in to make your opinion count.

Don't like this video?

Sign in to make your opinion count.




The interactive transcript could not be loaded.



Ratings have been disabled for this video.
Rating is available when the video has been rented.
This feature is not available right now. Please try again later.
Published on Dec 7, 2012

Were you disgusted by news coverage immediately following the death of Jovan Belcher?

Belcher was a linebacker for the Kansas City Chiefs who shot his girlfriend - and mother of his three-month-old daughter - dead after an argument. Belcher then drove to the Arrowhead Stadium practice facility to profusely thank general manager Scott Pioli and head coach Romeo Crennel for their roles in his career. He reportedly said, "I love you, bro" before shooting himself.

Fans and sportswriters tried to make sense of the Belcher violence, and with the suicide of San Diego Charger Junior Seau earlier this year in mind, they grasped at common straws that might tie the two acts together. But what separates Belcher from Seau - and other depressed athletes who've struggled with the fallout from a career of hard hits and head injuries - is that Junior's plight didn't end in the barbaric murder of his girlfriend and the orphaning of a three-month-old baby.

Jovan Belcher's suicide might have forced the question as to whether or not football has become too violent and punishing for its player, but killing his girlfriend elevates the action to something that cannot be justified by appeals to celebrity culture and pop psychology.

Or even readily explained by scientific research suggesting traumatic injury causes permanent brain damage and behavioral problems. Killing your girlfriend is not a "behavioral problem", it is a horrific, evil, cowardly act that is morally wrong to try to either explain or excuse through the science of battered brains.

Yet everyone seemed to want to blame Belcher's actions on something else. At CNN, former Democratic congressional candidate and Real World participant Kevin Powell talked about the problems of super-macho culture and the ready availability of guns. Bob Costas lost his nut when he turned the Jovan Belcher tragedy into an anti-gun rant. Costas has fallen further off the rails than Powell if he thinks a gun-free Belcher home would have also shown an absence of violence or murder.

Instead of immediately reaching for our nearest ideological hobby horse, let's stipulate an ugly truth: Sometimes people are bad.

Brain injury did not pull the trigger that blew away both of Zoey Belcher's parents one horrible Saturday morning. Jovan Belcher did, and for that he will rightly be remembered not as a big man, but as a bad man.

Produced by Tracy Oppenheimer. Written by Kennedy (who also hosts) and Nick Gillespie.

About 2:40 minutes.

Go to http://reason.com/reasontv/2012/12/07... for links to the story above, downloadable versions, and more videos. And sign up at Reason TV's YouTube channel to receive automatic notification when new material goes live.

  • Category

  • License

    • Standard YouTube License


Uploads from ReasonTV

  1. 591

    Craig Whitney on Living With Guns: A Liberal's Case for the Second Amendment

  2. 592

    I, Tomato: Morning Star's Radical Approach to Management

  3. 593

    Busting Bikinis and the Cop Who Wants to Fine Cursing! (Nanny of the Year 2012)

  4. 594

    Check out Reason's New LA Headquarters!

  5. 595

    Remy: I Saw Daddy Pat Down Santa Claus (A Very TSA Christmas Song)

  6. 596

    The Fall Of Tam's #6: How LA Regulated A Burger Stand Out of Existence

  7. 597

    Grover Norquist on Fiscal Cliff, Tax Pledges, & Being the GOP's "Rasputin"

  8. 598

    How Indianapolis Fixed Its Parking Problems

  9. 599

    The Best and Worst Christmas Films (Libertarian Edition)

  10. 600

    A Great Year For Pot, Freedom, and Ending the Drug War: Q&A with MPP's Rob Kampia

  11. 601

    Marijuana Is Legal in Colorado...Now What?

  12. 602

    Why Copyright Law is so Mickey Mouse - And How to Fix It: Q&A with Jerry Brito

  13. 603

    Judge Napolitano: How Teddy Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson Destroyed Constitutional Freedom

  14. 604

    Can an Undocumented Immigrant Become a U.S. Lawyer? California High Court Will Decide

  15. 605

    How Dewey Bartlett Balanced Tulsa's Budget without Raising Taxes

  16. 606

    James Payne on Six Political Illusions

  17. 607

    Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard: Making City Government Work

  18. Guns, Football, Macho Culture Didn't Kill Jovan Belcher's Girlfriend. Jovan Belcher Did.

  19. 609

    Censorship and "Unlearning Liberty" at College: Q&A with FIRE's Greg Lukianoff

  20. 610

    Reason Webathon 2012 w Nick Gillespie, Matt Welch, Kennedy, and more!

  21. 611

    Meet Congress' Favorite Bootlegger: Prohibition, Hypocrisy, and "The Man in the Green Hat"

  22. 612

    Reason Mag Preview w Matt Welch & Kennedy: APOCALYPSE 2013!

  23. 613

    "I escaped a North Korean prison camp" - Shin Dong-hyuk's Survivor Story

  24. 614

    LP Candidate Bruce Majors vs. D.C.'s One-Party System

  25. 615

    Texas Schools Track Students with RFID Chips! (Nanny of the Month, Nov '12)

  26. 616

    1000 Wrongfully Convicted and Counting: New Registry Checks Justice System's Power

  27. 617

    "The idea that you could openly sell things that help women achieve orgasm is pretty new."

  28. 618

    David Friedman on How to Privatize Everything

  29. 619

    The Future of Financing the Arts: An Interview with Adam Huttler of Fractured Atlas

  30. 620

    Fixing Chicago's Traffic Gridlock: Reason's Adrian Moore and Sam Staley

  31. 621

    Greg Gutfeld: The Joy of Hate, Liberal Speech Police, & Conservative Punks

  32. 622

    3 Reasons to Kill The Dept. of Homeland Security: It's Unnecessary, Inefficient, & Expensive.

  33. 623

    Philadelphia: No Love for the Homeless

  34. 624

    Roderick Long on Race, Gender, Equality and Libertarianism

  35. 625

    Athens of the Prairie: How Columbus, Indiana Got Great Architecture

  36. 626

    Lance Armstrong Cheated to Win. Is that Wrong?

  37. 627

    Media Manipulation and Unconventional Marketing: Author Ryan Holiday on "Trust Me I'm Lying"

  38. 628

    Watch Ron Paul's Farewell Address!

  39. 629

    Oklahoma Doctors vs. Obamacare

  40. 630

    Ladies, We're Screwed: Why Obama's Re-election is Bad for Choice

  41. 631

    Gary Johnson, Benghazi, and Free Speech: Reason's December Ish!

  42. 632

    What Writer Most Turned You on to Freedom? Or, What We Heard at Reason's Bastiat Prize Dinner.

  43. 633

    One Veteran's Story: "You Come Back And You Just Don't Feel The Same."

  44. 634

    Khan Academy Founder Talks Radical Education Reform and The One World Schoolhouse

  45. 635

    The Fallacy of Net Neutrality: Thomas Hazlett on the FCC & Consumer Protection

  46. 636

    3 Reasons Mitt Romney and Republicans Lost Big in Election 2012

  47. 637

    Obama Wins and Nothing Changes; The Wildly Unpopular Status Quo Is Ratified!

  48. 638

    Bronco Bama and Mitt Romney Aren't the Only Things to Cry Over

  49. 639

    Remy: Romney, Obama, and Binders Full of Chicks (The Election 2012 Rap)

  50. 640

    The Anti-Science Left: Author Alex Berezow on Why Both Parties Fail at Science

  51. 641

    Gas Lines, Gouging, and Hurricane Sandy: Keeping Prices Low Means Nobody Gets Fuel

  52. 642

    Q&A with Libertarian Vice Presidential Candidate Jim Gray

  53. 643

    LA to Pet Stores: You Can't Sell Animals Unless They're Rescued (Nanny of the Month, Oct. '12)

  54. 644

    Three Reasons U.S. Drone Policy Is Really Freakin' Scary

  55. 645

    Crowded Prisons, Unions, and CA Three Strikes: Why We Can't Just Build More Cages

  56. 646

    Eugene Jarecki on His Drug-War Doc The House I Live In and Why Prohibition is Doomed

  57. 647

    "I Pledge to Serve Barack Obama" (Urgent 2012 Election Update)

  58. 648

    Condoms, Porn, and L.A.'s Measure B: The Most Bizarre Ballot Initiative of 2012

  59. 649

    Tom Bevan Talks Real Clear Politics and Election Polling

  60. 650

    Steve Chapman on Election 2012, Chicago and Pot Smoking Presidents

  61. 651

    Liberty Fund's Chris Talley on Freedom, Dialogue, and Ama-gi Tattoos

  62. 652

    The Knockoff Economy: How Copying Benefits Everyone

  63. 653

    Hayek Institute's Barbara Kolm on the Eurozone Crisis

  64. 654

    Why Expanding America's Military Strength Puts The U.S. at Risk

  65. 655

    Reason-Rupe Poll on Fixing California, Prop 30 and Rolling Back State Spending

  66. 656

    Do the Cops Know Your Info? A Conversation with the ACLU of Illinois's Adam Schwartz

  67. 657

    Are We In the Final Days of Marijuana Prohibition?

  68. 658

    Capitalist Pig on Why Hedge Funds and Ayn Rand are Great for the Economy

  69. 659

    How Romney and Republicans Can Appeal to Libertarians

  70. 660

    How Obama and Democrats Can Appeal to Libertarians

  71. 661

    The Exonerated: True Stories of Innocents Sprung From Death Row

  72. 662

    Short Skirts and Bear Markets: An Interview with Stock Market Analyst Robert Prechter

  73. 663

    Damon Root on 3 Supreme Court Cases to Watch in 2013

  74. 664

    Journalist Andrew Malcolm on Embracing New Media

  75. 665

    John Goodman on Curing the Health Care Crisis

  76. 666

    Russ Roberts: Why Keynesians Always Get it Wrong (and Most Economists Too)

  77. 667

    Ai WeiWei, Pussy Riot and the Power of Punk Art: An Interview with James Panero

  78. 668

    Marginal Revolution University: Q&A with Alex Tabarrok

  79. 669

    The Cast of Atlas Shrugged Part II Talks Film's Impact

  80. 670

    Really Good Reasons to Skip College: Q&A with Blake Boles

  81. 671

    Freedomain Radio's Stefan Molyneux on the Inevitable Growth of the State

  82. 672

    Helicopter Parents vs. Free Range Kids: Q&A with "America's Worst Mom" Lenore Skenazy

  83. 673

    Why U.S. Health Care Costs More Than Canada's: "A Mercedes Costs More than a Corolla"

  84. 674

    After Debate Hangout

  85. 675

    Citizenship Denied: DOMA, Immigration, and Gay Marriage

  86. 676

    Atlas Shrugged Part II: What We Saw at the World Premiere in D.C.

  87. 677

    Reason-Rupe Poll: Obama Leads Romney, 52-45 Percent; Gary Johnson Pulls 6 Percent

  88. 678

    Obama vs Romney: Special Interactive Nanny of the Month!

  89. 679

    Wall Street Journal's Stephen Moore on the 2012 Election

  90. 680

    Too Big To Regulate: Barron's Gene Epstein on Dodd-Frank

  91. 681

    Wake the F*ck Up! - A Rebuttal (NSFW!)

  92. 682

    Steve Horwitz on Austrian Economics, Bleeding Heart Libertarians, and Family

  93. 683

    Rachel Carson's Silent Spring at 50 Years

  94. 684

    Immigrants DREAM on: Neither Obama nor Romney will help you

  95. 685

    Remy: Imagine (There's No YouTube)

  96. 686

    Boob Over Bottle: Mike Bloomberg's Latest Nanny State Dictate

  97. 687

    David Simon on Treme, New Orleans, the Drug War, Obama, The Wire - And Disappointing Libertarians

  98. 688

    Why Your Vote Doesn't Count, Obama's Failed Narrative, Four More Years of War

  99. 689

    What We Saw at the Occupy Anniversary Protest in NYC

to add this to Watch Later

Add to