I’d like to thank you for giving me my Sundays back.
Since I was little, I’ve planned my Sundays around watching football. Family and friends, folks and food, we’d cook and eat and drink and watch pro athletes play at the peak of their sporting ability. On special occasions, we’d even scrape together enough dough to see a football game in person – I’ve been so lucky to attend professional football games in Pittsburg, Chicago, San Francisco, San Diego and Dallas. My Sundays were about family and football.
Now, the NFL is becoming something other than football. NFL players who used to be role models now have DUIs, kids with a dozen women, foul mouths, and either skated on manslaughter raps or are in the pokey facing them. They behave like spoilt children, get arrested for fighting with bouncers, tear up restaurants, and literally shoot themselves in the leg. NFL team owners pander to politics, play games with city and state funds, and hire greasy political attorneys to whine for them on national TV when they don’t get the free money or free stadium they think they’re entitled to. Instead of spending my week looking forward to a weekend of football, I’m hiding from daily news about the NFL’s players and owners.
Meanwhile, NFL, your corporate behavior belies your “nonprofit” status. You push politics and issues like you use to hawk merchandise. Every ad and break is full of messaging and PR, so much of it thinly veiled expressions of whatever slice of your agenda was selected to beat your viewers over the head with that week. I don’t care if a player is white, black, straight, LGB or PBJ, and I don’t want to. Additionally, every time an NFL announcer who’s supposed to talk football starts acting like an expert on guns, race, homosexuality or politics, they water down their credibility as a football expert. Then these “experts” start conflating issues, and tell me someone should play football because he’s gay or a girl or a victim, when I only want to watch him play football.
Then I read that NFL teams are taking money to promote a political monstrosity like Obamacare – the Ravens, for example – and I ask myself whether I should be more outraged that the NFL was marketing an awful healthcare program, or that taxpayers are paying them to do it. And then there’s how that promotion is being done… The NFL’s players are sending out Tweets written for them by the White House, which are funneled to them by the players’ union! That’s not football, that’s a weaponized White House using high-dollar low-information pro athlete children to do their dirty work. At the same time, the NFL punishes players who disagree with its agenda and send them to – I’m not even making this up – re-education. How is that not big-state Stasi-KGB-GRU behavior? I don’t want that in my America, let alone my football. And instead of standing up for free speech, the NFL is increasing its drug-testing tolerances so the players can get a little more stoned on the weekend. Nice family-oriented message.
The saddest part of all this is that the NFL itself is being played. The current inhabitants of the White House, and all their progressive-cum-commie machinations, have used one group after another as stepping stones to their ultimate goal of a massive state bureaucracy that’s accountable to no one. If the little kids running the NFL think they can outpolitic or outmoney people like Barry Obama and his ilk, whose cultish devotion to big government puts the machine politicians of Chicago and New York to shame, you’re well on your way to being stepped over like these progressives stepped over the Jewish lobby, the unions, black Americans, low-information voters and will shortly be stepping over the gay lobby and every other “interest” group they’ve pretended to stand up for. You’re being used as leverage that in the end will be turned on you.
I don’t watch football for gay stuff or racial stuff or political stuff – in fact, I want football to help me avoid that crap. I watch football for the athleticism, action, skill and tradition, and because some of the guys who play are still stand-up role models for myself and my kin. That’s what built the NFL, and I would argue that most football fans don’t care about anything else. The further you move away from those things, the less I watch, and I bet my show that I’m not alone.
Hey, NFL, thanks for giving me my Sundays back.
c/o Hank Watson’s Garage Hour
[A downloadable JPEG of this is available at the show’s Farcebook page, and there might be a PDF here if we can figure out how to attach it…]