The pathetic opening night ratings and the blowback over that Nike endorsement never got these players’ attention, huh?
It isn’t about whether you have a right to speak up about an issue — or even whether there may be actual social issues that need solving.
The question is, should flipping the bird to your own fans during the national anthem be the time and place you raise that issue?
For the Miami Dolphins, the answer seems to be ‘yes’. And it’s being described as a ‘first-Amendent right’ issue.
Colin Kaepernick thanked a pair of Miami Dolphins players for taking a knee during the playing of the national anthem prior to the first game of the NFL regular season Sunday.
Miami Dolphins wide receivers Kenny Stills and Albert Wilson were the first — and as of Sunday evening, the only — two players to kneel during “The Star-Spangled Banner” prior to a Week 1 game.
“My Brothers [Stills] and [Wilson] continue to show their unwavering strength by fighting for the oppressed! They have not backed down, even when attacked and intimidated.” Kaepernick wrote on Twitter, adding, “Love is at the root of our resistance!”
In addition to Stills and Watson’s protest, Dolphins defensive end Robert Quinn raised a fist during the anthem. San Francisco 49ers receiver Marquise Goodwin did the same prior to the Niners’ game at Minnesota.
My Brothers @kstills and @ithinkisee12 continue to show their unwavering strength by fighting for the oppressed! They have not backed down, even when attacked and intimidated. Their courage will move the world forward!
“Love is at the root of our resistance!”✊🏾 pic.twitter.com/2kSsX4s7EU
— Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) September 9, 2018
Maybe a tweet including the ‘black power’ fist by someone who made a donation to a charity named after a cop-killer isn’t exactly a way to persuade undecided people of the righteousness of the cause.
For somebody in any other job, it isn’t even a question.
You’re on company time, representing the franchise.
Suppose a news anchor interrupted his headline story with some personal thoughts on, say, abortion, or the South African land grab, or Chinese human rights abuses, would people be cheering his courage and defending his use of free speech, or that he was an idiot popping off on company time, and ought to be fired?
This is no different.
The more the millionaire activists continue to antagonize the fans, the more the fan base that funds the sport gets eroded.
Eventually, the time will come that the league doesn’t generate enough money to fund those gazillionaire paychecks. But by then, it would be too late.
Habits change, and new ones can easily take their place.
Baseball, Hockey, Basketball, racing, MMA — there are all kinds of other sports to occupy a person’s time — and that’s for the people who haven’t already cut the cord entirely.
The ratings are already pointing in that direction.
LMAO: NFL’s Opener Belly Flops – Ratings Down From 2017
If the league loses these fans, it just might be for good.