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Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports


Intervention Specialist Perspective: Reuben Foster’s actions can’t be condoned; Still needs support

Sequoia Sims
Apr 13, 2018 at 10:25 AM


San Francisco 49ers' promising young linebacker, Reuben Foster, was recently charged with felony domestic abuse by the Santa Clara DA's office.


Back in February, I wrote a feature on the 49ers Webzone, titled: Looking at the Culture and Infrastructure Around Reuben Foster. In this article, I covered Foster's upbringing, putting into perspective Foster's adversity and emotional state throughout life, and the support system needed for him to have on- and off-the-field success.

First and foremost, I don't condone Foster's actions one bit, especially as a father with a daughter of my own. And having worked in the Bay Area with battered woman and survivors of domestic violence hand-in-hand with several organizations, I have an intimate understanding of every aspect of DV.

There's a process in place


  • Legal process - court dates, arraignments, a plea or plea agreement (guilty, not guilty), probation/informal probation, jail, court or community fines, etc.
  • NFL Process - gather all the facts and evidence in the case, suspension, loss of pay or potential lifetime ban for multiple domestic violence offenses, etc.

  • NFL team's process - gather all the facts once the legal process has taken shape and make a decision to either fine the player, release the player instantly, keep the player and give him support, or go after his signing bonus based on violating the code of conduct policy, and putting out a public statement to the NFL community and the fan base.

  • Fan Process - can be judgmental based on your perspective on the matter, want him to have a due legal process ("innocent until proven guilty"), a zero tolerance stance ("he should be flat out released"), or you don't condone his actions but feel he needs to get some support and have the right infrastructure in place around him so the athlete can become a better person.

Intervention Specialist Perspective (ISP)


Let's put the process to the side for a minute and look at the person called Reuben Foster and not the millionaire athlete called the "Ferrari." Foster isn't a victim when it comes to his actions and the alleged charges he's being charged with; the position he's put himself, the 49ers, his teammates, and fan base in as a whole, is simply inexcusable.

However, his circumstances, his environment, and infrastructure as a youth make him a victim also. How so? Going back to the link of Foster's upbringing, violence was a learned behavior that was either taught directly or indirectly by a transformation of actions that circulated around Foster. And Foster mimics those actions.

Again, not condoning or making excuses for Foster; I'm speaking to the root of how Foster's action came to fruition.

Reuben Foster's actions can't be condoned; Still needs Support


The 49ers are invested in Foster, as we all know. However, I don't believe it's all just for business or to make a buck off his jersey sales. I think the 49ers genuinely like Foster and believe overall that he's not a bad kid, as crazy as that sounds. I believe the organization has interpersonal/humanity stock that's invested in the person named Reuben Foster.

Ultimately, the 49ers want to do the right thing on all accounts, but Foster has to want to be better too, as I've said on many occasions.

If Foster is willing to be a better person and showing effort, and he's getting support from his teammates like Richard Sherman and Jaquiski Tartt, then that's a start in the right direction (with a positive infrastructure around Foster).

And hopefully, he might be able to turn things around and get himself back on the right track, in all aspects of his life. If not, he'll be out of nine lives (no pun attended, of course) as the 49ers will surely release him, and his short NFL career will come to an end.

To be 100 percent crystal clear: It's never okay to hit or put your hands on a woman. This article was written to just shed light on the circumstances surrounding Foster, from a different perspective.

Recent Niners Live article alerts: In the wake of the Reuben Foster charges, the 49ers will stay the course.

Sequoia Sims: Founder of Niners Live, Content Creator, player breakdown specialist, and Senior Author. The home of the faithful fan and analyst from an objective/analytical lens, and different perspective, of course.
The opinions within this article are those of the writer and, while just as important, are not necessarily those of the site as a whole.


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