Lanterns: My Self-Imposed NFL Boycott


My Self-Imposed NFL Boycott

I’ve been a NFL football fan since I was a small child. I even recall watching the very first Super Bowl (Green Bay Packers vs. Kansas City Chiefs). Men like Jim Taylor, Bart Starr, Jerry Kraemer, Paul Horning. etc. Back then, the thought of not standing for the national anthem never entered anyone's mind, and that’s regardless of skin color.


On my radio show, I mention that Colin Kaepernick does have the right to protest and sit during the anthem. I also point out that I equally have the right to react to his protest. In response to Kaepernick’s antics, I made a solemn oath not to watch a San Fransico game ever again, unless the NFL stops supporting negative activities. 


Last month, the NFL denied athletes of the Dallas Cowboys requests to wear helmet decals honoring the Dallas police officers murdered during the Dallas riots. The NFL also threatened Titans linebacker Avery Williamson with a fine should he wear cleats decorated with a tribute to those that died on  9/11. So outraged by this threat was a police union that it offered to pay any fine Avery would be saddled with.  It was that threat that made me turn up a notch my personal boycott from not watching the San Fransisco 49ers, but for the first time in my life, not watch the NFL at all. As of this posting, ESPN reports that the NFL will no longer impose Williamson with a fine.


The NFL must show respect to positive tributes. By saying these tributes violate uniform codes is true, but only to a point. Each year, NFL athletes wear pink shoes, pink sweatbands, and other items pink all for breast cancer. Granted, breast cancer awareness is certainly a worth wile cause. To say to a player he can't wear a 9/11 tribute cleat, however – a positive, not negative tribute - is just being too picky. It would be so easy to grant permission to positive tributes if presented by the players to the NFL before hand. In this way, if something is so outlandish, the NFL could deny permission. But if it is positive, they could wave a code. Sadly, there is no such thing. 


Yet the NFL allows Colin Kaepernick and other NFL players to not honor our anthem. This negativity is spreading like wild fire. However, as I said before, they have the right not to stand. I also have the right not to watch their games.


But it does deeper than that. People go to the movies, a baseball games, etc. as a form of escapism. Escapism from the grueling week of hard work, stress, never getting enough sleep or "I just can't handled so many things at once!!!".  When it comes time to relax, we as a society don't want to go to a movie to watch Robert Redford's politically liberal movies, so they bomb at the box office. Show us positive political movies and they make tons of money (American Sniper, for example). It is the same at a football game. I don't care what a player's politics are. I don't want to know. I want to watch the damn game without seeing a protest. If they want to protest in a press conference after the game? Fine, but not on the field including before the kickoff. 


Again, negative forms of protest have been spreading throughout the culture like wild fire, the most recent case being Kaepernic’s refusing to stand for the national anthem. But what is next? People not standing for the national anthem for other left-wing concerns? Imagine not standing for the national anthem because you wanted to draw attention to the fact that some states refuse to let Men into women's bathrooms. Where would it end?


I also would like to add that America has an amazing and wonderful history. Yes there are parts of our history that we’re not proud of, but American’s are certainly not unique in that regard. America was never perfect, but America is the most perfect of all countries. Regardless of whether our liberties have been eaten away under Democrat rule, America is still the land of the free and home of the brave. Colin Kaepernick's protest is misguided by left-wing politics and left-wing media propaganda. I have spoken about the relevant statistics many times. White kids get shot by black cops, too. As twice as much. Hispanics are also shot by officers more more often than blacks. Yet Hispanics and whites are much less likely to riot, march, protest, etc as a result of the above data.


I occasionally tell the story about a black cop that called to go to a 7-Eleven after getting a call that a white man had been waving a gun. As the officers arrived to the scene, three white males in their 20s walked out of the store. The officers told the men to “stop,” but Dillon Taylor had headphones on and kept walking, unaware of the officers’ orders. As Taylor reached to pull his sagging pants up, he was shot. In this case, the black officer erred in his reflex judgment and training. It was not racism. 


I’ve also mentioned that no white cop kisses his wife and kids goodbye as he leaves for work thinking, "I am going to kill a black guy today". When someone like Michael Brown is shot and killed, we witness riots before the facts are even in. Black people loot other black owned stores, burn cars, destroy buildings that have black residents in them. Running out of the stores smiling with all they can carry. Then when the facts do come out that there was no "hands up, don't shoot.” They say the Grand Jury was rigged, they lied. In other words, facts do not matter.


In absolutely no way do I blame the black community. In fact, there are many in the black community trying to bring us together and not divide us like our Divider In Chief. The media also contributes vastly to accelerate racial divisions. A black girl shot in Chicago doing her homework in her own living room may not be a good story to air, but a black guy slamming his body inside a van so violently that he kills himself and the officers are to be blamed – and some where black - that gets on the news in an instant. The media is evil, and there’s no getting around it. Just listen to MSNBC, CNN, and you can cringe when you hear the bias and/or propaganda. 


So, what does all of that have to do with Colin Kaepernick? His protest is about police and injustice to black people. He even admits he has respect for police and admitted that most policemen do wonderful things. He said, however, that his protest is just for the few that are bad. Really? With all the good in America, you are going to not stand for the national anthem because of a few bad cops. There are a few bad people in every walk of life. So I guess we should all sit out the national anthem for one reason or another. No, athletes should not display their ideology, just play the damn game and be a man and stand for the national anthem, show respect, and do your protesting in a more productive matter. 


Lastly, I must say, good riddance, NFL. I love ya, but, until you get some control, I have no problems watching lingerie football instead.

Written by Marty O'Sullivan

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