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Letters: Life in NFL trenches — bullying or tough love?

What readers think about Richie Incognito and his treatment of a teammate.

November 08, 2013
  • Former teammates Richie Incognito (68) and Jonathan Martin (71) during a Dolphins practice this summer. Martin says he left the team this week because of emotional distress caused by continual bullying by Incognito and others.
Former teammates Richie Incognito (68) and Jonathan Martin (71) during… (Lynne Sladky / Associated…)

Anger prevents me from being as eloquent as Bill Dwyre [Nov. 7]. If the accusations are true, what Richie Incognito did was disgusting. It not only doesn't belong in football, it doesn't belong anywhere.

His teammates defend him? Either they're stupid or Incognito intimidated them all into putting a happy face on something that wouldn't be tolerated anywhere else in our society. You don't make a man of someone by insulting them and taking away their dignity and self-respect.

As to the "big brother" analogy: Since when is it all right for "big brother" to push "little brother" around? Pranks and good-natured ribbing go with the territory and are endemic in all sports.

But this wasn't just over the line, and defending Richie Incognito defends a jerk. It's hypocritical to condemn bullying in school and online but to give Incognito a pass because football is a tough sport.

It's a tough sport, not a stupid sport. Taunting isn't allowed on the field and it should not be tolerated or allowed off the field.

Michael Solomon

Canoga Park

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I guess I should've complained when my Army basic training drill instructor started screaming at me and my fellow soldiers. I'm now quite positive that he was bullying all of us. And to think that this frightful trend has continued in the NFL with one player bullying another. It's enough to make one turn off the game and turn on the Food Channel. Luckily for Miami's Jonathan Martin, the Politically Correct police and their battery of lawyers are standing by and ready to hold his hand through this terrible ordeal. If all else fails, there's always another career available for Martin in table tennis.

Charles Reilly

Manhattan Beach

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Kudos to retired NFL player Cam Cleeland [Nov. 8] for publicly speaking out against an NFL culture — and its hazing practices — that allows seasoned players to psychologically and physically abuse rookies. For those players and fans who incredulously support Richie Incognito's psychological abuse of Jonathan Martin — because they believe Martin needed toughening up — you ought to listen to Cam Cleeland, whose eye socket was shattered during rookie hazing.

Susan Bernard

Los Angeles

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The Martin-Incognito matter is approximately a week old. Get back to me the day of the Super Bowl and let me know if anyone recognizes either of their names and/or what it was about.

John Snyder

Newbury Park

Still not sure about the Lakers?

Loved Dwight Howard's triple-double against the Lakers — in points, rebounds, and missed free throws.

Dan Kulick

Laguna Niguel

::

Hack-a-Howard. That's exactly why we don't need him in L.A. I LOVE IT!

You can't win a game down the stretch with him in the game.

He doesn't even want the ball! He runs from it! I LOVE IT!

Also props to Mike D'Antoni for using Hack-a-Howard at crunch time! I LOVE IT!

Dennis Taylor

Westlake Village

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What a pleasure to be able to relish the blight that is Dwight at the free-throw line at crunch time with the game on the line. The "White Mamba" struck another one for David over Goliath, and on Goliath's home encampment, no less.

Allan Kandel

Los Angeles

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The good news: Only 75 games until the lottery. Take your time, Kobe. With you or without you, we need all the pingpong balls we can get.

Frank Shapiro

Chatsworth

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The Times has printed letters the last two weeks from readers who labeled Kobe Bryant a ball hog. Perhaps these same readers should call Kobe directly. He might just pick up after five rings.

Dave Moore

Santa Ana

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I love the Lakers' new sophisticated offense. It's the same one my team uses each Saturday at the YMCA. I think it's called "Fire up the first shot you can get."

David Waldowski

Alta Loma

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Dwight Howard left the Lakers because he didn't want to play with Kobe Bryant, he didn't like Mike D'Antoni's system and he thought he had a better chance of winning in Houston. You can boo him but you can't knock his intelligence level .

Bert Bergen

La Canada

Cool it

I thought that UCLA's preseason training in the 100-degree environment in San Bernardino was a little excessive, until I read that Fresno State Coach Tim DeRuyter is thinking about having his players take an ice-bath to get acclimated to the high-altitude stadium in Wyoming.

Don Geller

Irvine

Off base

The ACLU is now UCLA's worst anagram — and worst nightmare. The ACLU's lawsuit on behalf of veterans [Nov. 3] is impressively shortsighted, being narrowly focused on only what veterans are losing (acreage), while ignoring all the gains to the veterans (including free healthcare at UCLA hospitals) and especially to the baseball-loving community.

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