If you follow sports via social media or on TV, one popular refrain slipped into the vocabulary of many fans. “Stick to Sports“ is the go-to for people who don’t want sports journalists to offer opinion outside of the athletic realm. Yet, many of these fans have no issue with one particular person delving into conversations. Yesterday, Donald Trump held a ceremony for Philadelphia Eagles fans at the White House. Actually, these “fans” appears to be White House and congressional staffers. As a result, the event looked odd from the start. In effect, the White House threw a party and few non-employees showed up.

Where were the Eagles? Many decided against attending due to Trump’s rather strong, often inaccurate depictions of players and causes. Furthermore, Trump disinvited the defending Super Bowl champions from the White House. How did we get here?

The Purpose

As mentioned by many, Colin Kaepernick kneeled to protest the rampant police brutality affecting persons of color in the United Stated. Kaepernick spelled out his reasoning clearly. However, the president, his followers, and various fans decided to distort the true intention. By claiming the protest centered on the national anthem, Trump managed to place the spotlight in the wrong place. While the families of Eric Garner, Freddie Gray, and Walter Scott grieve their untimely demises, an act of silent protest drew the ire of the highest office in the free world.

 

The Lie

Many chided the Eagles for kneeling during the 2017 season. In fact, a major network ran stills of Eagles players kneeling. The trouble? No Eagle knelt during the 2017 season. In fact, those players depicted were praying. Despite multiple fact checks, the lie continues to grow out of control. We ventured beyond the point of trying to convince people otherwise. When video and audio exist and folks refuse to see, nothing will work.

 

The Fix

From the moment of protest, the NFL players were not going to receive any support from the plurality of the owners.  In addition, many of these owners donated to Trumps’ election bid. From the cool million handed over by McNair, Jones, and Snyder to the 250 large ponied up by the Glazers, money talks. Yet, their supportive silence was deafening.

After the owners bowed to the president via anthem policy, reports surfaced regarding Jerry Jones. You remember Jerry, he of the dramatic fake knee, interlocking arms protest that fooled no one. Jones, under oath, claimed Trump said the anthem issue played well with his base. Now, with Flint without water, kids dodging bullets in schools, why does the anthem merit such attention? Simple, nothing galvanizes a base like patriotism. With falling approval ratings and scandals swirling, Trump needed a win. The anthem issue, complete with underlying racial meaning garners support. Water, school shootings, and healthcare do not bring a voting group together. Flag waving, awkward ignorance and straight-up lying do.

 

Double Standard

Over the course of recent history, various franchises accepted the White House invite. However, not all championship franchises apparently merit inclusion. The WNBA champion Minnesota Lynx never received an invite to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. However, the previous occupant invited them three other times to celebrate championships.

Why no backlash? Providing that whatever device you read articles on, a Google search of the president and women could provide an answer. Not to mention, the red-blooded, American male demographic is borne from TV.

 

Thoughts

  1. Colin Kaepernick and those who kneel, protested unfair treatment by the police. The military did not play into this.

 

  1. Eric Reid and Kaepernick remain unsigned due to their stance. Any inference of skills remains a lie. While Mike Glennon continues to cash checks, Kaepernick can’t get a look.

 

  1. Nearly five thousand deaths affected the island of Puerto Rico due to Hurricane Maria. Yet, some of the island sits in darkness and help does not appear on the horizon.

 

  1. Since the Santa Fe Massacre, America suffered ten mass shootings in the nineteen days following.

 

While the first two do not directly affect the president, the last two should. If people want media types to stick to sports, why can’t he stick to policy and fix this? In reality, life supercedes football.

 

 

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