This coming Sunday evening, the Dallas Cowboys will open their NFL season against the Los Angeles Rams. Both teams will play for 60 minutes of playing time, possibly scoring touchdowns and / or field goals. Rams quarterback Jared Goff will try to justify his monster contract, while Dallas quarterback Dac Prescott will try to play his way into one. There will be passes and runs, tackles, and tie ties, some will win and some will lose.
Let me state all these rather obvious facts to remind you that this weekend there will not be three straight hours of NFL sports protests. No flags will be lit at midfield. No player will carry a signal to run their routes.
there Will Protest, one way or another. And, as the NBA showed us a few weeks ago, there is no guarantee that the games will happen on their own – although it is almost certain that they will. But when the game really stops, you’ll be able to watch NFL football … ie if you really want to do it.
On Monday night, the president’s son Eric Trump said on Twitter to react to Friday’s report that the Dallas Cowboys opposed the “green light” from the team’s ownership, according to defensive lineman Tyrone Crawford. Green light, Crawford said, gives the cowboy room “to feel, but we are feeling, expressing how we are feeling and saying everything we need to say.” Also, just trying to do something that’s going to create a boom isn’t just like watching some people at once and swipe like, ‘Oh, that’s great, the Cowboys did that , ‘Then by swiping. ”
Eric Trump responded by declaring football “dead”.
“Football is officially dead – ‘So much for America’s game,” Trump tweeted. “Bye NFL … I’m gone.”
Granted, Twitter bears little resemblance to real life. On Twitter, resentment takes both the cover charge and the parting gift you have given to you. That said, Eric Trump has four million followers, and if each of them carries a tincture of resentment in the world… well, you can see where he goes.
Along the same lines, it is important to note: Eric Trump has been on Twitter since May 2009. In those 11-plus years, he Absolutely tweeted about the NFL Twice Before Sunday, both times are only adding 2017 articles about kneeling. She is Tweeted only twice about “football”, Nor as an outspoken fan.
Eric Trump may well be a crazy veteran or a Patriot or Cowboys fan. He may have deleted thousands of tweets related to the NFL. He may even – here’s a wild idea – have a life outside of Twitter that he doesn’t feel compelled to share on social media.
But what he has tweeted here a few days before the NFL season is out, is nothing more than an attempt to show displeasure for his own sake. To see what happens next is equivalent to rhetoric about throwing firecrackers in the toilet, and for now it is the preferred method of communication for everyone who broadcasts an opinion. (Yes, including the media, and yes, that includes this article. I am aware of the irony.)
You are going to see this in the next few days, as the NFL is starting to take its first official step towards political activism. Critics would run to declare the league as “waking up”, announcing that there would surely be a drop in ratings as the true Americans would turn away from the league. The blowback will follow, as the other side of the aisle weighs in with its own cherrypipe version of the scene. Facts will be dismissed, feelings indulged. Resentment will be formed on its own.
Outrage is cheap heat. The outrage burns hot and fast, doing zero good for anyone and usually scorching the one who is most offended. You would think that by now we would have a lot more worthy things than personal expressions in the game of football, and personal opinions about those personal expressions – but if we have not learned more about America in 2020, we would When we fix a pebble in our shoes, we realize that we have an infinite capacity to ignore the fire that surrounds us.
Sports protests upset a lot of Americans with their conditioning. It is a normal human impulse to assume that everything that comes along after you first become self-conscious is by definition a meltdown. If you grew up in the 60s, then music declined after the Beatles and Stones. If you grew up in the ’80s, there is no point in whether LeBron wins for every single franchise. And if you have grown up in a time where politics usually falls below the surface of the game, then you may be wondering why they cannot play games and protest just on their own time.
All of them should be a perfectly reasonable defense for many who want to watch the game without thinking about the chaotic worries of life. No problem! There is nothing wrong in this! Matter of fact, I’m pretty sure Almost every american Would love to watch a ballgame without feeling the agony of guilt or despair or despair or, yes, resentment. We can all use a real escape right now.
But it is not that life, or sports, is working in 2020. Being hyperconnected means that we All The lines between many people to see that, say, politics and sports never really existed.
If you have stood for the national anthem in a sport, if you have cheered for non-white athletes, if you have torn up in a military family reunion, if you are thrilled for a fighter jet flyover, if you ‘Attend a game in a stadium funded with taxpayer dollars, guess what: You’re already neck deep in the dirty intersection of politics and sports. Protests are a new branch of the same river that flows forever through the game.
As the protests progress further this weekend, the likes of every fan are faced.
Some will see protests and feel sympathetic.
Some just won’t see.
Nothing will see, and loudly announce that they are not watching.
In Crawford’s words, some people will correct the protest message, such as “swipe by” ads in cars and beers.
Some will wonder what are the next, more concrete steps for change, beyond just one knee.
Some people may even ask themselves why this is so much more than the incidents caused by the protests bother them.
And, yes, some people will use the protests as an easy way to fire their supporters and score political points.
Like the Patriots reloading and winning, the Cowboys are making big and falling small talk, opposition is a certainty this NFL season. We know this, and so we’ve actually got only three options: focus on protests, focus on outrage or focus on sports. Your choice.
Week 1, enjoy all. It will be memorable, one way or the other.
Jay Busbee is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Follow her on Twitter at @ jaybusbee or contact her at [email protected] with tips and story ideas.
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