The NFL still doesn’t get it

I meant to post this last weekend for Veterans’ Day (and also to promote the national call to boycott the NFL in honor of vets – and protest the NFL’s dishonor) but it’s still relevant going forward since the league continues to appear woefully ambiguous about their patriotism. I found this letter at Stubborn Things. It says beautifully exactly what so many of us feel in our hearts about the ingrates who – either in person or in spirit – #TakeaKnee ~

An Open Letter to the NFL

[“The following was posted by a friend of mine on Facebook who said he had the author’s permission to spread this about.” – Brad at Stubborn Things]

flag-drapped-coffinYou graduated high school in 2011. Teen years were a struggle. You grew up on the wrong side of the tracks. Your mom was leader of the family & worked tirelessly to keep a roof over your head & food on your plate. Academics were a struggle for you – your grades were mediocre at best. The only way you stood out – you weighed 225 lbs & could run 40 yards in 4.2 seconds carrying a football!
Your best friend was just like you, except he didn’t play football. Instead of going to football practice after school, he worked at McDonald’s for minimum wage.
You were recruited by big colleges & spent every weekend of your senior year making visits to universities. Coaches & boosters tried to convince you their school was best. They laid out the red carpet for you.
Your best friend worked double shifts at Mickey D’s. College, not an option for him. The day you signed with State University, your best friend signed papers with his Army recruiter. You went to summer workouts. He went to basic training.
You spent the next 4 years living in the athletic dorm, eating at the training table. You spent Saturdays on the football field, cheered by adoring fans. Tutors took care of every academic need. You attended class if you felt like it. Sure, you worked hard lifting weights, running sprints, studying plays, & soon became one of the top players in the country.
Your best friend was assigned to the 101st Airborne. While you were in college, he deployed to Iraq once & Afghanistan twice. He became Sergeant & led a squad of 19 year old soldiers who grew up just like he did. He shed his blood in Afghanistan & watched young American’s give their lives, limbs, & innocence for the USA.
You went to the NFL combine & scored off the charts. You hired an agent & waited for draft day. You were a 1st round draft pick & your agent immediately went to work, ensuring you received the most money possible. You signed for $16 million but had never played a single down of pro football.
Your best friend re-enlisted for 4 more years. As a combat tested sergeant, he will be paid $32,000 per year.
You drive a Ferrari on the streets of South Beach. He rides in the back of a Blackhawk helicopter with 10 other combat soldiers.
You sleep at the Ritz. He digs a hole in the ground & sleeps if he can.
You “make it rain” in the club. He prays for rain as temperatures reach 120°.
Sunday, you run into a stadium as thousands of fans cheer & yell your name.
Your best friend knows little difference between Sunday & any other day. There are no adoring fans, only people trying to kill him & his soldiers. Every now & then, he & his soldiers leave the front & “go to the rear” to rest. He may be lucky enough to catch an NFL game on TV.
Then when the National Anthem plays he sees you dishonor your best friend by taking a knee, but he jumps to his feet & salutes the TV.
You protest ‘unfairness’ of life in the United States, he gives thanks to God because he has the honor of defending his great country.
To the players of the NFL: We are the people who buy your tickets, watch you on TV, & wear your jerseys. We anxiously wait for Sundays so we can cheer for you & marvel at your athleticism. We love to watch you play, but we care little about your opinions until you offend us. You have the absolute right to express yourselves, but we have the absolute right to boycott you.
We have tolerated your drug use, DUIs, domestic violence & your vulgar displays of wealth. We are ashamed for putting our admiration of your physical skills before what is morally right.
Now you have gone too far. You insulted our flag, our country, our soldiers, our police officers, and our veterans.
You are living the American dream, yet you disparage our great country.

Boycott all NFL football telecasts. All fans, all ticket holders, stay away from attending or watching any games on TV. Let them play to empty stadiums. Let their corporate sponsors get hit in the wallet.
Honor our military, many who come home with the American Flag draped over their coffin.

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