In today’s NFL, it is now impossible to watch a football game without politics. From knees taken, to fists raised, and everything in between, it has become a focal point on the 2017 NFL season. Now I know this has been all over every major sports media outlet and you’re all sick about it by now, as am I, but I would feel remise if I didn’t put my take on the situation.
First, and foremost, as demonstrated you see where I am on the spectrum regarding the National Anthem. But, in the days following I started to take a notice and it finally came to the realization for me. The players aren’t protesting the National Anthem anymore, they’re protesting Donald Trump. Personally, I think taking a knee during the anthem now is a weak protest because it defeats the premise it originally had. The purpose of the kneeling during the anthem was supposed to draw light to social injustice and the racism Kaepernick believed was going on in the world at the time.
Now, it has shifted to a protest toward Donald Trump after he made the broad generalization that all players that took a knee were a “son of a b*tch”. Obviously, I don’t necessarily agree with taking a knee during the anthem, but I agree less with the Donald Trump approached this matter because the players are in fact exercising their first amendment.
I understand and the players protesting Trump’s comments in the right fashion. Linking arms and taking a knee before the anthem (not during) in my opinion is an acceptable way to protest, because you are showing unity as one without disrespecting the flag. Although I understand Mike Tomlin’s way of thinking, I don’t really agree with taking your team off the field to “not give them the choice” as I think every American has the choice stand or sit for the anthem.
Now, with that said, I think the protests have ran their course, and here’s why. Donald Trump gets the fact that players are now unified, in fact we all do but, it has now gotten to the point where the protest isn’t what it was initially intended to be. The protest is no longer about social in justice, racism, or inequality, it’s about players showing Trump that they are unified. So, in a conniving way, Trump has kind of got what he wanted, and that’s for the spotlight to be taken off social injustice. Even though it was unintentional, this was the worst outcome possible for the players that initially took the knee.
In short, I think the protests for injustice have no fallen useless as it is now masked as a protest against Trump, therefore I think the taking a knee demonstration now shows no purpose and should be stopped. I am all for finding a way to protest racism or social injustice, the players now just must find new ways to do it. The protests now are too common and draw light to nothing. I hope someday we live in a perfect world where this isn’t an issue but right now it is. So, if the players can find a new invented way to protest hat sticks out from all the others and doesn’t disrespect our nation, I’m all for it.