The NFL owners met this week in Atlanta to finally address the anti-American anthem protests that were threatening to ruin all of the goodwill and branding the league has built up over the decades. Under intense fire from conservatives, police officers, military vets, fans, and the president himself, the NFL realized that they could not allow the players to keep disrespecting the flag, game after game, season after season, and retain its place as America’s Game. Something had to give, and this week it did.
On Wednesday, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced a new policy whereby players will be fined if they kneel for the anthem before games. Teams which wish to avoid the controversy altogether may permit players to remain in the locker room for the duration of the anthem.
In an interview with Fox News, President Trump said he was more or less pleased with the new rule. “I think that’s good,” he said Thursday. “I don’t think people should be staying in locker rooms but I still think it’s good. You have to stand, proudly, for the national anthem. Or you shouldn’t be playing, you shouldn’t be there. Maybe you shouldn’t be in the country.”
The policy launched a thousand angry SJW-tinged columns from sportswriters around the country, proving once and for all that the liberal media doesn’t begin and end with Washington political pundits. We would be hard-pressed to find even a single mainstream sports columnist who actually came out in favor of the NFL’s new rule; they seem to all think that having players disrespect our nation’s flag and anthem before every game is just swell.
The policy angered the New York Times Editorial Board so much that they felt it necessary to bash the NFL in a special editorial on Thursday called, “The NFL Kneels to Trump.”
“Rather than show a little backbone themselves and support the right of athletes to protest peacefully, the league capitulated to a president who relishes demonizing black athletes,” they wrote. “The owners voted Wednesday to fine teams whose players do not stand for the national anthem while they are on the field.
“Let us hope that in keeping with the league’s pinched view of patriotism, the players choose to honor the letter but not the spirit of this insulting ban,” they continued. “It might be amusing, for example, to see the owners tied in knots by players who choose to abide by the injunction to ‘stand and show respect’ — while holding black-gloved fists in the air. Or who choose to stand — while holding signs protesting policy brutality. We look forward to many more meetings of fatootsed gazillionaires conducting many more votes on petty rules to ban creative new forms of player protest.”
To imagine that the NFL enacted this rule to mollify one man – even if he’s the president – requires a willful blindness to the woes the league is currently experiencing. Ticket sales are dwindling, ratings are plummeting, and the brand is freshly tarnished every time one of these players takes a knee. The NFL isn’t “kneeling to Trump,” they are standing up for the AMERICAN fans who have had enough of this anti-American crap tainting the game they love.