Will the NFL Demand Respect for Old Glory?


By Pat Buchanan

Will the NFL Demand Respect for Old Glory?
Will the NFL Demand Respect for Old Glory?
Pat Buchanan
Patrick J .Buchanan

USA -(Ammoland.com)- “America refuses to address the pervasive evil of white cops killing black men, and I will not stand during a national anthem that honors the flag of such a country!”

That is the message Colin Kaepernick sent by “taking a knee” during the singing of “The Star Spangled Banner” before San Francisco '49s games in 2016. No NFL owner picked up his contract in 2017. But a few players began to copy Colin and to “take a knee.”

Friday night in Alabama, President Trump raged that any NFL player who disrespects Old Glory is a “son of a b—h” who ought to be kicked off the field and fired by his team's owner. And if the owners refuse to do their patriotic duty, the fans should take a walk on the NFL.

And so the stage was set for NFL Sunday.

Two hundred players, almost all black, knelt or sat during the national anthem. The Patriots' Tom Brady stood in respect for the flag, while locking arms in solidarity with kneeling teammates.

The Pittsburgh Steelers coach kept his team in the locker room. Steeler Alejandro Villanueva, an ex-Army Ranger and combat vet, came out and stood erect and alone on the field.

For NFL players, coaches, commentators, owners and fans, it was an uncomfortable and sad day. And it is not going to get any better. Sundays with the NFL, as a day of family and friends, rest and respite from the name-calling nastiness of American politics, is over.

Branco Unsportsmanlike
Many NFL Fans watch football to escape politics and the daily grind, but now days it’s right in your face, thanks to some. Cartoon by A.F. Branco 2017

The culture war has come to the NFL. And Trump will be proven right. Having most players stand respectfully during the national anthem, while locking arms with other players sitting or kneeling in disrespect of the flag, is a practice the NFL cannot sustain.

The mega-millionaire and billionaire owners of NFL franchises are going to have to come down off the fence and take a stand.

The issue is not the First Amendment. It is not whether players have a right to air their views about what cops did to Michael Brown in Ferguson, or Eric Garner in Staten Island, or Freddie Gray in Baltimore. Players have a right to speak, march in protest, or even burn the flag.

The question NFL owners are going to have to answer soon with a definitive “yes” or “no” is this: Do players, before games, have a right, as a form of protest, to dishonor and disrespect the flag of the United States and the republic for which it stands? Or is that intolerable conduct that the NFL will punish?

Trump is taking a beating from owners, players and press for being “divisive.” But he did not start this fight or divide the country over it.

Kaepernick did, and the players who emulated him, and the coaches and owners who refuse to declare whether insulting the flag is now permissible behavior in the NFL.

As Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said Sunday, team owners and Commissioner Roger Goodell have strict rules for NFL games. No NASCAR-type ads on uniforms. Restrictions on end-zone dances. All shirttails tucked in. Certain behavior on the field can call forth 15-yard penalties for unsportsmanlike conduct, or even expulsion from the game.

Our Supreme Court has denied coaches of public high school teams the right to gather players for voluntary prayer before games. Why not an NFL rule requiring players to stand respectfully silent during the national anthem, and, if they refuse, suspend them from play for that day?

Or will the NFL permit indefinite disrespect for the flag of the United States for vastly privileged players whose salaries put them in the top 1 percent of Americans?

If watching players take a knee on the gridiron before every game, in insult to the flag, is what fans can expect every week, Trump again is right: The NFL fan base will dissipate.

Sunday's game exposed a clash of loyalties in the hearts of NFL players. Do black players stand in solidarity with Kaepernick? Do white players stand beside black teammates, if that means standing with them as they disrespect the flag under which hundreds of thousands of our soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines have died?

This conflict in loyalties among NFL players mirrors that of our country, as America divides and our society disintegrates over issues of morality, patriotism, race and culture.

We have been here before. At the Mexico City Olympics of 1968, gold and bronze medal-winning sprinters Tommie Smith and John Carlos each raised a black-gloved fist as a sign of solidarity with Black America, and not the nation they were sent to represent.

A month later, America elected Richard Nixon.

In terms of fame and fortune, no professions have proven more rewarding for young black American males than the NFL and the NBA.

Whether they soil their nest is, in the last analysis, up to them.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of the new book “The Greatest Comeback: How Richard Nixon Rose From Defeat to Create the New Majority.

  • 34 thoughts on “Will the NFL Demand Respect for Old Glory?

    1. The NFL Bigwigs could care less what their players do. Every year they draft Thugs, Drug dealers, Murders and Wife beaters. They let rich asshole buy teems and steel them from their home cities. You think the Government is corrupt they have nothing on the NFL. If every American in the great nation that thinks Athletes disrespecting the flag and America is disgusting stops watching all NFL football and I mean all NFL games and the owners start losing MONEY BIG TIME it will stop.

    2. I Don’t do facebook or twitter or any of those deals. If some of you who do please put the thought of refusing fly overs and other on field functions out there . Maybe the base commanders who provide the services will see it and stop them. Maybe POTUS should ban the practice, it is ultimately done with tax dollars.

    3. Actually, the NFL rules already require that all players “be on the field for the playing of the National Anthem” (which the rules also require to be played or sung before each game begins), and players and coaches are required to “stand at attention, with helmets in their left hands at their sides,” while non-players stand either at attention or with their hands over their hearts. The problem isn’t the absence of NFL rules, it is simply the absence of the political will to enforce them.

      1. That’s because Goodell sold his nutsack a few years back and doesn’t have the cojones to stand for the rules and for respect. He whines about what Trump said – what a crock! As a Veteran I refuse to support this crap. I am done with the NFL, and will watch College Ball from now on until that swine pulls his head out of his backside.

    4. Whereas I agree that something must be done about all the violence in our streets. A NFL football game is not the time and the place to accomplish that. Certanly when you disprespect our country’s flag, and all the brave patriots that have died in her service. You are insulting our very core values. There are many things I would like to see changed and improved in this country. But the way to accomplish that is to work to make them better, not just protest them.

      There are many things I don’t like that are happening in our country, that I would like to see changed for the better. But protesting them at my place of employment is not the time or place to get that done. Most people if they promoted their own personal addenda at work . Would at the very least be given a employee warning, or at the worst would be shown the door. When someone else is paying for your time, you are expected to conform to the company culture and image. What you do when not in their uniform, or on their company grounds is your business.

      1. @Lee J. I only write this so that we are clear. When Kappernick first refused to honor the U.S. and our flag, it took him a week to come up with the excuse that black people were being killed by white police. Kappernick’s has never complained about violence in the streets. Never mind that statistics show that very few black people are killed by white police.
        Most black people that lose their lives to violence, die at the hands of other black people.

      1. The word has gone out in military circles (active duty, retired, veterans, reserves, guard) to boycott ALL NFL games (televised or in person) beginning 1 October 2017 and to continue until these antics cease. We consider them to be totally disrespectful to all those who have served, and especially to the fallen who devoted their lives to defending the rights of all citizens. We fought for the Flag, and the Nation it stands for. If the NFL wants us to respect them, they better respect us.

        1. 100% with you. Let the idiots protest. Maybe it is time for the NFL to fall apart. All employers have rules. Follow the rules or get a new job. Time for our military and our veterans to make a stand. Boycott the disrespect!

    5. The only way the NFL is going to do anything officially about the disrespectful and ungrateful players is if it costs them money NOT to do something.

    6. Walk away from the NFL and dont look back. Do not support these millionaire babies.
      My daughter and I are going shooting this Sunday at the 300 and 500 yard ranges.
      Have fun.

    7. You people are unbelievably stupid, and racist. You get all your talking points from right wing nutbag radio entertainers. Don’t like the NFL? Good! Just P!$$ off and don’t come back. You deliberately make a statement about inequality and police brutality into something entirely different, so you can justify your despicable racist rants.

      1. Unfortunately my friend you are either stupid or crazy. There is no racism anywhere around here, just facist liberals screaming at the top of their lungs. I for one will not be watching the NFL or buying their crap until they figure out how to honor the country they play in. Do they have the right to protest – yes! Do they have the right to burn the flag – yes! But I wont be there to watch or listen to their crybaby whining and whimpering.

        1. @JS, Your comments are right on. I do find it hypocritical that Xcrement Xcrement would call everybody else racist, when he has made so many angry racist comments, himself.
          Xcrement Xcrement has boasted of getting paid for responses to him. He has also denied getting paid for responses to his inflammatory propaganda. That makes him either a paid liar or an unpaid liar, but a liar and unworthy of consideration or conversation, in either case.
          Finally, it is easy for Xcrement Xcrement to tell the NFL’s customers to “Pi$$ off” since they are not his customers.

          1. Old Useless Racist Bill, your bunny ranch must be lined with tinfoil, right? What other conspiracy theories do you believe in?

        2. You are confused, pal. Let me state again, in the simplest way possible, the protest is about:
          1. Inequality
          2. Police brutality against black people.
          That’s it. Period.
          The fact that you WANT it to be about rich BLACK players stomping on the flag and disrespecting war heroes is just asinine. You are being played by the right wing radio nutbags and now the Orange Orangutan has piled on–to deflect you from all his failures. I ask you, who is the [email protected]$$?

      2. Hey F&*kstick – how many buddies have you had sent home under that flag? How many relatives? How many times have you been handed a folded flag that was draped over your family members coffin? How many times have you fought in a desperate battle of life and death under that flag? How much did you give for the freedoms that flag represents?
        I KNOW the answer to all of the above – ZERO! You little mealy mouthed Ba*tard, you need to be sent off to Afghanistan and learn how much freedom you have and what it means to sacrifice. But you’re a coward. I look for your type when the civil war breaks out, and the way I treat your type won’t be civil at all.

      3. It is blatant disrespect! It has nothing to do with anything else. You can call it a protest over treatment of one group by another, but they picked the wrong way to do it. Please tell me how disrespectful actions at a sports game changes the behavior of anyone?

    8. DONE with the NFL… The Steelers cowering in the tunnel was a DISGRACE to the state of PA. and the Nation !
      Villanueva… Now THERE is an AMERICAN HERO !

    9. The N.ot F.or L.ong think like big banks did !
      Oh ! we’re to big to fail , we got the power .
      They got squat at my house it don’t come on !
      Would rather twitddel my thumbs than watch,
      over-paid, under-educated , men who loads of
      needed to be in jail for domestic abuse or other
      overlooked crimes they’ve committed .

    10. The rest of us have rights too. They is plenty to do on a Sunday afternoon. Just like with Stephen Colbert, when the NFL comes on it is time to change the channel!

      1. ” Just like with Stephen Colbert, when the NFL comes on it is time to change the channel!”

        Isn’t that the truth. . . . . . . . .

    11. I am a veteran. I turn off any NFL game where any player disrespects our National Anthem or flag!

      These ungrateful guys should get down on their knees not to protest, but to thank the Lord that they live in a country where they can make millions of dollars playing just 14 games during a season!

    12. I wonder how much those disrespectful jerks would contract for in the National Football League of Zimbabwe or the National Football League of CRP. I bet they would be a heck of a lot more respectful of the flag in those countries. I heard a FOX report saying that nineteen percent of viewers were turning off the TV after the pre game and just before the playing of our national anthem.

    13. I think that all of these asshat NFL players that have knelt for the National anthem should be shipped overseas to Afghanistan and put in the front lines for about two months. That way they could see how real people have to live, especially the ones’ who protect these turds rights to disrespect Old Glory. They gripe about how the blacks are repressed … gee lemmeesee those assh*les make more in one year than most ordinary folks see in a lifetime of hard work. So I want to know what they personally will do to better the conditions for their people. They going to marry some single Mom and provide a good role model for Jameel who is running the streets with the Crips?

      Hey here’s a thought – Why don’t they protest on their OWN time in another place instead of a facility that my tax dollars helped to build. Sports should be kept neutral and no politics allowed. But ever since Colon Kaopectate did his running off at the mouth last year, now its an epidemic among football players to disrespect the flag. And it is exactly for that reason that I am done watching the NFL until they get their sh*t together and straighten these buttheads out.

      Plenty of College ball on Saturday.

        1. @DaveW It must be hard for the Kappernick family. They rescued the kid (whose name is unworthy of mention) from the really bad situation that his biological parents put him in. He rewards them by bringing dishonor to the family name, friction to the cultures, and division to the nation. Wasted time. Wasted effort. Wasted money.

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