It's already been discussed to death and I don't want to revisit it yet again.
The readers digest version:
You don't need to punch a player to get DQ'd.
Although some folks say that DQ's are black and white rules, the actual penalty says:
Article 2 — Rough Play
A player shall be penalized and subject to disqualification for any act of rough play against an opponent, including but not limited to:
striking an opponent with the fist, hand, knee, elbow or helmet in an excessively rough manner,
kicking an opponent or,
any other act of excessive roughness considered by the Referee to warrant disqualification.
Not simply grabbing the face mask during the play. Harris spun a player around by the face mask, pulled it off his head during a fight well after the play was way over.
Everyone who saw the play would categorize it as rough play against an opponent. Most, non-bomber fans would call it excessive. Therefore Article 2, point 3 should/could have been exercised.
Maybe the Ref didn't see it, so couldn't DQ Harris, but the command center could see it and chose to ignore it.
If the penalty is about safety like they say it is, then it's a dangerous play. More dangerous than punching a player with a helmet on.
Folks bring up Adams vs Bighill ignore the fact that Adams took a 1 game suspension for the play or justify it by saying that Adams hit Bighill with the helmet. I don't think that's any worse than throwing a guy to the ground by his face mask.
Yes, I think the players who were thrown out should have been.
No, I don't think throwing Harris would have made any difference to the outcome of the game, nor do I think is was the worst face mask ever.