We've been hoodwinked, bamboozled, led astray!...You get the idea

At the start of the NFL season, I came to the conscious decision not to boycott any games. Nothing against Colin Kaepernick or his movement (which I 100% agree with), I just didn’t see why we should protest the NFL to accept him back when he was brave enough to buck the system. I felt Kaep was a martyr for the caused and I appreciate him for it but I still couldn’t bring myself not to watch any games. I love football, and I have grown up looking forward to the upcoming season once September rolls around, and this season was no different. It wasn’t until this past weekend that I took a hard look at the television screen, at the games, the players, the announcers and said, “this is all bullsh*t, I’m done.”

During the week before the games, our “President” Donald Trump spoke at a rally and said he wishes the NFL owners would fire the “son of a bitches” who protested during the National Anthem. Trump then doubled down and tweeted that owners need to make their players stand during the anthem, and bashed the overall quality of the league as well.

The public response was swift. Everyone from Diddy to Chris Paul called for the players to protest in response to the President. As a result, Sunday all eyes were tuned into the games to see what was going to happen, and how the players would react. I was even curious; I didn’t know what to expect because I know how scared and uncertain NFL players about their contracts. They need to feed their families too, as Dallas Cowboy player Dez Bryant said during the summer. 

What came next was a mockery of Colin Kaepernick’s original stance. Teams locked arms and kneeled during the anthem. Even team owners, many of who supported Trump during his campaign run, stood with the players to protest…. Trump. Not send the message Colin risked his career and livelihood for. They didn’t all stand together to protest police brutality, and unarmed shootings of Black men in America like Kaepernick set out to do. They stood together in solidarity in response to Trump’s views on the protest its self, but not the destruction of Black Bodies in this country. In a sense, they are protesting the response to the protest, but could care less about the actual reason of the original protest! My head hurts thinking about how idiotic it truly is. 

All last year and up to the moment Trump tweeted, players shucked and jived and condemned Colin for his message, and now, all of a sudden because he attacked the NFL shield it’s a problem? 

Nah fam, I’m not riding. 

The Eagles team owner flat out stated he would never sign Kaepernick because of his protest but re-signed, and defended a player in Riley Cooper who was caught on video saying basically saying he would "fight any Nigger,” but I digress. Ray Lewis also took two knees during the anthem. The guy who personally met with Trump to accomplish, um, nothing, and told Baltimore Ravens owner, Steve Bisciotti, not to sign Kaep because he felt he was going to cause locker room to be divided. What’s different now? The answer is, again, nothing. Even Tom Brady of the New England Patriots (my favorite team) showed his hypocrisy by locking arms during the singing of the National Anthem. Brady who proudly displayed his “Make America Great Again” hat in his locker decided to protest.

As you can see it’s all one big game. They have effectively taken power away from Kaeps message and weakened the overall protest and made it a pissing contest between the NFL and Donald Trump. They are gaining viewers back (at least at the start of the games) because people just want to see what players will do. 

The NFL thinks we are dumb and will forget about what this is all about. I will not take part in the charade; ya’ll can have that mess.    



Malcom X. Bowser is a writer, curator, and founder of Urban X.

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