Here it is, 2018, Colin Kaepernick out of a job and Black Lives Matter hasn’t been heard from in a while (at least, not when anyone was listening.)
And yet, the NFL National Anthem debate is once again in the news.
The media has a tendency of focusing on narratives that rev people up, rather than narratives that most people agree on.
Sadly, you think most people would agree that it’s respectful to stand for the National Anthem, no matter what your ideology is.
The NFL, who found themselves at the center of the Anthem controversy when Kaepernick inspired dozens of other players to kneel during the National Anthem in protest of police brutality.
Fans did not take too kindly to this, and the franchise found themselves caught between declining sales and falling victim to the notoriously tyrannical Court of Public Opinion. They at first supported the players, who are paid millions to earn even more money for the vastly wealthy NFL owners, to practice their “free speech” on the field.
Then, in what many called, too little too late, they announced a policy for the 2018/2019 season that players would be required to stand or stay in the locker room.
For some insane reason, they’ve flip-flopped back, once again, suspending the policy which drew the attention of POTUS himself, who has been quite vocal about the importance of the well-paid players showing their respect for the Anthem during games.
The Daily Wire has the story:
President Donald Trump reignited the war with the National Football League on Friday after the league announced on Thursday that they were halting their decision to prohibit players from kneeling on the field during the national anthem.
The NFL suspended its policy after the Miami Dolphins revealed yesterday afternoon that they would “suspend and/or fine players who protest during the national anthem,” The Daily Wire reported.
Trump responded on Friday by blasting the NFL on Twitter, writing, “The NFL National Anthem Debate is alive and well again – can’t believe it!”
“Isn’t it in contract that players must stand at attention, hand on heart?” Trump continued. “The $40,000,000 Commissioner must now make a stand. First time kneeling, out for game. Second time kneeling, out for season/no pay!”
The NFL National Anthem Debate is alive and well again – can’t believe it! Isn’t it in contract that players must stand at attention, hand on heart? The $40,000,000 Commissioner must now make a stand. First time kneeling, out for game. Second time kneeling, out for season/no pay!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 20, 2018
Some critics say the President shouldn’t weigh in on this issue, but they forget that Trump’s willingness to not only weigh in on the culture war but to make it a central narrative in his platform, is why so many Americans gravitate towards him.
Americans take patriotism seriously, and a lack of patriotism is one of the central issues of our most hotly-contested and vital political issues of our day.
We voted “America first” for a reason, and how our celebrated sports franchises reflect the patriotism of millions of Americans definitely matters.
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