“Propaganda”: NFL’s BLM Pandering Fails to Impress Colin Kaepernick
In addition to alienating millions of football fans who just want to turn on the games and forget about politics and racial strife for a few hours, the NFL’s over-the-top pandering to the Black Lives Matter movement isn’t winning over the player who started it all. In a tweet on Sunday, former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick accused the league of hypocrisy.
“While the NFL runs propaganda about how they care about Black Life, they are still actively blackballing Eric Reid (@E_Reid35) for fighting for the Black community,” Kaepernick wrote. “Eric set 2 franchise records last year, and is one of the best defensive players in the league.”
While Kaepernick himself had a chance to get back into the NFL when they scouted him for an open workout last year, his tardiness and general attitude led teams to conclude that he wasn’t particularly serious about suiting back up. Reid, his former teammate on the 49ers, has not been blackballed. He played for the Carolina Panthers for the last two years. Kaepernick is not wrong about Reid’s strength on the field, and there is room for Reid to complain that he might have been unfairly targeted for “random” drug testing. Is it likely that anyone in the NFL would try to punish this dude, considering the times we’re in?
Well, you can judge for yourself. The Guardian had a pretty good rundown of this weekend’s “propaganda”:
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic only one team, the Jacksonville Jaguars, admitted fans on Sunday. The Jaguars stayed in the locker room for the anthems while their opponents, the Indianapolis Colts, stood on the goalline. The Colts head coach, Frank Reich, was the only member of the team to kneel. Indianapolis Star reporter Joel Erickson estimated half the crowd stood for Lift Every Voice and Sing.
In a statement similar to those issued by other teams, the Jaguars said they decided to stay in the locker room “to continue raising awareness of racial injustice against the Black community. We understand that not everyone will agree with our position and demonstration, we hope that all will seek to understand the reason for it.”
The Green Bay Packers, Philadelphia Eagles, Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins and New York Jets also opted to stay in the locker room for the anthem during Sunday’s early kick-offs.
These protests (and, perhaps, the dull crowdless stadiums) have led to plummeting ratings. And if most racial activists feel like Kaepernick, then they are apparently making absolutely no one happy. Would it be too much to ask for these players and teams to just return their focus to sports and leave the racial politics to cable news?
We assume that’s not in the cards. Unfortunately.