Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Bram Has Been Reinstated, Charges Dropped

Charges have been dropped, so Bram's back, I guess
Photo Credit: Lee South/Impact Wrestling.com
The domestic battery charges levied against TNA superstar Bram in Florida have been dropped. The charges were dropped last week, and yesterday, TNA released a statement confirming his reinstatement with the company. Granted, Bram's suspension has been nerfed by the fact that he's been on episodes of Impact that have been taped months in advance, and depending on how TNA's taping structure works, the time he has missed may end up not meaning a thing in terms of exposure and continuity.

All of the coverage at this point has been exceedingly one-sided. Bram's attorney has released a statement claiming some horseshit about knowing his client would be "exonerated." Seemingly no information has been released on why the victim has dropped charges. Remember, dropped charges do not at all equal innocence. Remember, Greg Hardy, the National Football League player, was charged with domestic battery for choking his girlfriend and throwing her on a pile of guns. Those charges were also dropped, not because he was innocent, but because he got appeal after appeal until he was able to request a trial by jury. The victim never showed up for testimony, and thus the charges were automatically dropped. The victim's reason for going off the grid was unknown. Did Hardy threaten her further if she testified? Could she not afford the legal fees like Hardy, who is a millionaire thanks to pro football, could?

The lack of facts coming from the prosecution or details as to why the charges were dropped (and if the victim voluntarily dropped the charges, she is entitled to her privacy) makes this whole thing dubious. The speed at which TNA announced the reinstatement, however, means one of two things. Either TNA knows something no one else knows, or the company only cares about legal proceedings, victim be damned. Given the company's less than charitable history towards women, the latter scenario isn't as unlikely as one might come to believe. In fact, I'd be willing to bet that something fishy is going on here, but for fear of implying criminality against a technically innocent man, I will stop right there.

Yes, Bram is technically "innocent," and TNA has every legal right to take him back under contract, however many he's currently signed to, but the whole thing seems grimy. Another domestic abuse incident shadily passes under the radar, and barely anyone bats an eye. It would be one thing if domestic abuse were taken seriously, and victims were able to get the justice they require, but that's not the case. An abused person, woman or man, stays abused because the system is rigged against them. Truly innocent or not, the Bram case seems like one where TNA could have made a strong stance against domestic violence, at least making him sweat a little bit before reinstating him. But what it says to me is that TNA doesn't care about women, doesn't care about victims, and it's only concerned about getting the big strong tough ones back to work as per the letter of the law, ignoring any nuances that may be tainting that legal decision. Then again, expecting TNA to do the least sensitive thing possible is like expecting someone to be able to herd cats.