Russell Wilson brings attention to domestic violence issue Print
Written by Mary Uhler   
Thursday, Oct. 09, 2014 -- 12:00 AM

There is more to Russell Wilson than his life as the star quarterback for the Seattle Seahawks. Wisconsin Badger football fans got glimpses of Wilson’s character when he played quarterback in Madison.

I became a “friend” of Russell Wilson on Facebook long before he won the Super Bowl for the Seattle Seahawks. I have been impressed with his strong religious faith and sense of service to the community.

Wilson’s revelations

Recently, Russell Wilson showed his strong character in another way: by talking about domestic violence and bullying on The Players’ Tribute, recently retired Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter’s new website.

Wilson revealed that he used to be a bully. “Many of you readers probably think I have been Mr. Goody Two-Shoes my whole life, but honestly, I was a bully growing up. In elementary and middle school, I threw kids against the wall. I rubbed their heads in the dirt at recess. I bit them. I even knocked teeth out.”

Thankfully, Wilson was “saved” by his faith when he was 14 years old and started “living for others instead of just myself.”

Realizing the scope of violence in society, Wilson decided he wanted to do something about it. He noted that up to 10,000 Americans are turned away every day from domestic violence shelters due to lack of resources.

How we can help

“All I can do is my small part. And I invite you to help me,” said Wilson. He has launched the “Why Not You Foundation” to raise funds and awareness for worthy causes. His first initiative is to ask people to Pass the Peace to support victims of domestic violence by making a $2 donation to the National Domestic Violence Hotline. Simply text WNYPassThePeace to 41444 to make a contribution. For more information, visit

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and it is also Respect Life Month in the Catholic Church. In their statement When I Call for Help, the U.S. Catholic bishops said: “Violence in any form — physical, sexual, psychological, or verbal — is sinful; often, it is a crime as well.”

I encourage people to pray for those involved in domestic violence and to help them by making a contribution to Pass the Peace or other community efforts. Thank you, Russell Wilson, for bringing more attention to this important issue.