James Tamou
James Tamou Getty Images

No tears for Tamou, but did his punishment fit the crime?

NOT for one moment do I feel sorry for James Tamou.

To get behind the wheel of his car after obviously consuming a skin full, was irresponsibility of the highest order, and dangerous in the extreme.

Tamou is remorseful, but the 23-year-old father-to-be should also be thankful the cops stopped him when they did, before he had an accident.

Imagine how he would be feeling right now had he killed an innocent man, woman or child.

Worse still, the bloke was unlicensed.

Apparently he has never held one.

What goes through someone's mind when they jump behind the wheel of a car under those circumstances, literally playing Russian Roulette every time?

But just because Tamou is a high-profile rugby league player, did he deserve to cop both barrels from the NRL?

By being ruled out of Origin II, he has virtually been fined $50,000 on top of his two-game suspension.

And he still has to front a magistrate, who will no doubt come down on him like a ton of bricks.

In what other workplace - apart from some professional sports - would a double-edged punishment like this be meted out? Would a doctor, for instance, suffer a similar fate, or a politician?

And is the NRL culpable of double standards?

From a public perspective, did Tamou's offence bring the game in to disrepute that much more than the Paul Gallen incident in Origin I, remembering that Gallen was slapped with a one-match ban only for his antics, which continue to make headlines 10 days after the game?

Tamou deserved to have the book thrown at him, but I never suspected he'd cop the entire library.

Hopefully the message gets through.

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