Only a few short months ago, the NFL brass announced that they would return to enforcing an item in the official handbook that states that players must stand for the national anthem. While Commissioner Roger Goodell gave teams an out – they could stay in the locker room if they could not bear to pledge their allegiance to the flag – it wasn’t good enough. Left-wing sportswriters and activists were outraged at the thought that the NFL might actually listen to the fans and enforce their own rules. A million cries of “free speech” were heard from the Washington elite and the rest of the liberal circus. We wonder – if the players were kneeling until Congress funded a wall across the border, would these liberals still think it was a protest to be encouraged and praised? We didn’t think so.
In any event, the NFL, under pressure from the players’ union and the aforementioned leftists, has now decided that it will take no action at all against players who kneel for the anthem.
The NFL is not expected to implement a new policy on the national anthem this season, league sources told ESPN, no matter how many meetings and conversations occur regarding the topic.
The new policy is going to be no policy — at least for this season, according to sources.
Too many people have stances too strong to figure out a compromise, but an NFL official insisted Sunday morning that there is continuing dialogue on the topic as the league looks for ways to address social justice issues.
As much as the NFL would seemingly like to put the anthem protests in the rearview mirror, they are apparently unable to find the intestinal fortitude to actually do anything about it. Thus, the controversy keeps growing, year over year. At this point, it has become as much of a political hot-button issue as anything in the sports world ever has. With Colin Kaepernick’s new Nike ad just adding fuel to the fire, the league’s decision to simply do nothing is a profile in pure cowardice.
“Wow, NFL first game ratings are way down over an already really bad last year comparison,” President Trump tweeted on Sunday. “Viewership declined 13%, the lowest in over a decade. If the players stood proudly for our Flag and Anthem, and it is all shown on broadcast, maybe ratings could come back? Otherwise worse!”
It seems the NFL has chosen social justice over patriotism, and it could be that they will look back at even these ratings fondly as more and more Americans become utterly fed up with this disrespect.