Wednesday, January 24, 2018

WWE Has Fired Enzo Amore

Bye, Felipe
Photo Credit:
A day after announcing his indefinite suspension over accusations and a police investigation of rape, WWE has released Enzo Amore, real name Eric Arndt. The move came as a surprise when it first broke, but later on, news came out that WWE made the move to release him after finding out he'd been under investigation since October and didn't tell the company about it until news broke on Monday. As a refresher, Arndt is accused of drugging and raping his alleged victim, and is currently under investigation by police in Arizona.

Many people have come out and applauded WWE's actions and used them as a cudgel to beat back indie promotions who have dealt with similar situations and acted slowly or not at all. While companies that either continue to book Michael Elgin, Bram, or other known abusers and rapists do deserve criticism, please do not mistake WWE's actions for pragmatism. As a publicly traded corporation with crossover aspirations, WWE made the move because it was by its own book and so that it didn't lose precious sponsorship money. It is better than companies who continue to consort with these kinds of people, but it's an insanely low bar to clear.

As for Arndt, he's responded on Twitter claiming his innocence. The Fightful story linked above also has details from a "friend" of the accuser that put the accusations in doubt, at least from the standpoint of legality. Arndt may walk from these accusations unscathed from a legal point of view, which will be wrong in my view. I get flustered when more than one person is trying to talk to me at a single time. I can't imagine how much the victim had to process during that whole ordeal. Not only is she on medication for mental health issues, but she was a recovering addict who was thrown into a situation of coerced relapse and who was far too removed from her ability to consent that even if she said yes to sex at the time, it was still a situation where she was taken advantage of.

So this situation is far from over. Woe to the indie promotion who books him whether now or after things clear up after a potential acquittal or charge dismissal. You know it's coming, because people are still booking Elgin, people are still working for Sami Callihan, promotions are still bringing in Bram as last minute additions because if they announce him beforehand, he'll cause a tank in ticket sales. It's crazy how far people will go to make excuses for predators and abusers. Arndt will be no different, unless he bucks the trend and actually goes to jail for his crimes. I'll be holding my breath until that happens.