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Dear Janay,

Where do I begin? Just don’t know because notwithstanding the obvious from the elevator video, I am more bewildered and affected by you yourself!

I am a woman, the parent of an adult son and more importantly a member of one of society’s most embattled minority groups – a woman of color, who happens to be queer and a mama/daddi (for those who are not familiar with the Queer Nation, this phrase means in my relationship I assume a more paternal function in parenting responsibilities). I find myself cringing every time I read, hear or witness your demeanor, Janay. Not because of what you said or did. Rather, by what you have come to represent.

As I watched your wedding video, you stated that you met and fell in love with Ray Rice when you both were the tender age of twelve. I understand (from public reports) that Ray is about 27 and assume that you are also. Accordingly you and Ray share a beautiful two or three year-old daughter. I can certainly appreciate that your family, especially your child, is your most cherished blessing and a source of great pride and concern. I think everybody can understand this.

Considering all of these things crystallized my quandary with you, Janay! Can you honestly watch that elevator video and explain to your daughter why her father sucker punched you in a public elevator, then dragged your limped body out into a public foyer with some of your private parts exposed? How, once this episode became public knowledge, her father “realized” that he wanted to make her mother his wife? Whereby a lovely wedding video was paraded around to show the world how much her Daddy loved you? Janay, he married you a day after he was indicted for knocking you O-U-T. Is the “elevator video” or the “wedding video” the real story of the Rice Love?

Janay, what are the words you will use to your daughter as to why you over and over took responsibility for her Daddy’s actions? Also can you help me understand why in every photo, press conference, etc, you have your eyes cast downward? Will your daughter ever know or understand the value of being able to look people in the eye – especially those who claim to love her!

If you can please help me understand why the media, the NFL and the brotherhood of NFL players believe this was an isolated incident? Was it really? Janay who will teach your daughter about self worthy, dignity, integrity and most importantly the sanity of “real love”? Finally, Janay, is the public scrutiny really what’s making your life painful? Was that the media that knocked you senseless?

Janay, you know the truth, that which will set your life and your daughter’s future free. Help all the little girls who will be in similar situations some day understand, Janay! What is your innocent daughter really learning behind the closed doors you have chosen for her to grow up behind?

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