30th Jul2018

Opinionated: Lethal Injection

by Nathan Favel

jay-lethal-opinion

Sex crimes of any kind have existed in wrestling over the years, just as in any walk of life. From Roddy Piper’s story about a male wrestler who wanted him to grab his penis in public to Mel Philips orally raping an eleven year old at a WWE event, we’ve had these accusations before. What of Vince McMahon, who has been accused to have raped the first female referee in WWE history in his limo after she refused to perform fellatio on him? There are even the stories/rumours about Droz having date raped many women while working for the WWE and, allegedly having had been dealt with by John Bradshaw Layfield in the shower with a rape of his own… Yet, we have a much simpler scenario that may be very well be true that is just as potent as any of the others. Jay Lethal, one of the best wrestlers of his generation, may be a pervert.

Brought to the public by the victim in question, the wrestler Taeler Hendrix was told by Jay Lethal that he had halted her push because she refused to have sex with him. When she was told of this, Taeler informed the management team at Ring of Honor, their place of work, that he had done this. Ring of Honor management did nothing with her claims and Taeler left the company. At this point, the story is one of conjecture, but the fact that it took a few years for this story to even become available to the public is staggering. Lethal’s character has been called into question since Taeler made her accusation, as well as her character, to be frank. Apparently, Taeler has a penchant for saying outrageous things on Twitter, which seems to be a problem for most people these days, but that still should not immediately deplete her claim of its validity. As I like to think of it, just because the girl cries wolf too often, doesn’t mean you should stop taking her seriously. As for Lethal, he has been accused for close to a decade of being difficult to work with, which may have led to his firing at TNA/Impact. The most frightening claim on his character has been that he has been sexually abusive to many of the women he has helped train over the years, including AJ Lee.

We are living in a time when there are many women, from Rose McGowan to Asia Argento to Reese Witherspoon and far too many others who have revealed that they have been harassed, assaulted or raped by men and women. Numerous men have been removed from their professions due to their bad behavior and while some do deserve be given an immediate chance at redemption, a plethora of others deserve to be removed from society, forever. It remains to be seen where Jay Lethal falls in the spectrum of guilt, but the fact that Jay Lethal has not been stripped of his title, if only to establish his desire to cooperate with those who want to ensure that he is not truly guilty, is disturbing. What if Lethal has committed this crime and is being left in a position to do so again? James Gunn was recently fired from Guardians of the Galaxy 3 for comments he made that he has spent almost seven years apologizing for, so why has Jay Lethal not been held to the same standards that all others have been? I am all for the concept of “innocent until proven guilty”, but when we have an accusation that has been compounded with as volatile a reputation as Lethal’s is, why can’t the Sinclair Broadcast Group, the owners of Ring of Honor, at least take this potentially devastating revelation seriously? Do they support his way of doing business? Is this just an assumption on their part that Taeler is just not a team player? I don’t, obviously, have any real answers, but if Sinclair doesn’t start getting serious about Jay Lethal’s possibly cavalier attitude towards sex and life itself, then they might have a travesty on their hands if he is revealed to be a predator without honor.

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