The NFL and the National Anthem

The Process

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Where are people doing this?

Personally, I don’t say all Trump voters are racist. But his racism wasn’t a deal breaker for them.
It's not so much that the country has gone bananas as it is that NFL owners are a bunch of scared, reactionary white men who fear racist Trump supporters because, at heart, they are racist Trump supporters.
But they support(ed) Trump, who has always been racist trash and by voting for him they condond(ed) his bigotry, right? I mean what outcome did a Trump supporter / voter expect to happen?
I get what you are saying however, voting for Trump wasn't necessarily about loving everything that Trump did or stood for but about him being the lesser of the two evils at least in her case. Me personally I couldn't stomach voting for either and chose Gary but I'm sure you see my point. It's got some grey area that most things in life do.
 

Vinho Tinto

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I get that. But the NBA gives their players tons of other outlets to express themselves.

I disagree with the bolded, BTW. The owners in the NBA might not be Bernie Sanders, but they seem to be far more tolerant than their NFL brethren.
Whether or not NBA owners are tolerant is up for debate, but they have done something the NFL is unwilling to do - make the players feel they are working with them. NFL owners are obsessed with imposing their power on anything they can and it justifiably bit them once the protests started. The players had no reason to believe the owners were concerned with their message, but just wanted the protests to go away. The NBA management does not mirror them in that regard.
 

rodderick

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As a veteran I was really angry by the kneeling during the national anthem at first. I stopped watching the NFL but the more I read and tried to understand why Kap was kneeling I got it. It seems like the NFL is trying to injure itself much like baseball did in 94. We'll see how it turns out but I hope the players use this to be louder about social injustice.

I would like to add that not all Trump supporters are racist and that by labeling them (my wife voted for him) as racist you are generalizing and stereotyping in the same manner of the people you are so against.
I agree that not all Trump voters are racist, but I don't see how one could possibly vote for Trump if they're not at the very least indifferent to racial issues.
 

snowmanny

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I get what you are saying however, voting for Trump wasn't necessarily about loving everything that Trump did or stood for but about him being the lesser of the two evils at least in her case. Me personally I couldn't stomach voting for either and chose Gary but I'm sure you see my point. It's got some grey area that most things in life do.
I assume that knowing what we do now all the responsible Republicans will disavow this clown and line up behind a solid challenger in the primaries.
 

johnmd20

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I agree that not all Trump voters are racist, but I don't see how one could possibly vote for Trump if they're not at the very least indifferent to racial issues.
And saying they are indifferent is generous. I don't think that is an intolerant view to say Trump sides with racists, it's just the reality.
 

Tyrone Biggums

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Where are people doing this?

Personally, I don’t say all Trump voters are racist. But his racism wasn’t a deal breaker for them.
No. All 45 supporters aren’t racist. However, all racists support 45. So there in which is the conundrum. But if someone voted for 45 and still haven’t seen the light then I just have to assume that you’re a narcissist piece of shit and yeah probably a racist too.

I’ve ended friendships over this. It sucks. Some friends I’ve known for 25 + years but I can’t respect someone who still supports a bigot.
 
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The Social Chair

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The NBA did double down on their rule correct? They were asked about it and Silver said players were expected to stand and sent out a league wide memo.
I understand they allow other options but am I missing anything else? Policies seem similar and NFL players have protested other ways without any league repercussions
NBA players follow Lebron's lead on these type of issues and he said the following before the season.

"For me personally, my voice is more important than my knee," James said during Cavaliers' media day Monday , when asked if he would potentially join teammates in protests similar to the ones Trump decried last week that are taking place in the NFL.

"I talk (to media) every single day, what I say I think it should hit home for a lot of people," James said. "I don't believe I have to get on my knee to even further what I'm talking about."
 

Tyrone Biggums

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I get that. But the NBA gives their players tons of other outlets to express themselves.

I disagree with the bolded, BTW. The owners in the NBA might not be Bernie Sanders, but they seem to be far more tolerant than their NFL brethren.
Part of it is the Union. The NFL has by far the weakest union of any of the big 4. They roll for the racist owners regardless of the issue. I say Racist owners because it’s fairly obvious anyone who was in favor of this is someone who deeply supports the policies of 45. Kind of funny that this league wants to expand to Mexico eventually, yet the owners by supporting 45 support a wall being built.

Yeah the Rooney’s care about kneeling over African Americans being slaughtered by cops, yet they don’t give a shit if their QB raped women.
 

axx

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Part of it is the Union. The NFL has by far the weakest union of any of the big 4. They roll for the racist owners regardless of the issue. I say Racist owners because it’s fairly obvious anyone who was in favor of this is someone who deeply supports the policies of 45. Kind of funny that this league wants to expand to Mexico eventually, yet the owners by supporting 45 support a wall being built.
There might be a fair amount of owners who are convinced the decline in tv ratings was due to the protests.

I guess we will have to see how the union responds, if they want to escalate it or not.
 

AB in DC

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The thing is -- Kaepernick never intended this to be a political protest, at least not at first. In the beginning it was just his unwillingness to associate with a country that hadn't treated him very well (cf Jackie Robinson).

Somewhere along the line -- and I'm still not sure that this all happened with Kaep's support -- it morphed into a protest. Which made it political, which (in this day and age) made it divisive. That changed Kaep & co from conscientious objectors to draft-dodgers, so to speak. Whatever you want to say about it, that was a very risky move. It raised awareness of an important cause (good!) but in a way that offended a large number of people (bad!). And reasonable people can differ about whether one outweighs the other.

And doing it on the job, rather than one's personal time, does make a difference. My boss is not going to force me to do something I'm not comfortable with -- but my boss is absolutely going to restrict me from leveraging my position to support causes that are unrelated to my organization's mission. Now I'm a government employee, so there are ethics laws and such that don't apply to football players, but the principle is the same.

So I'm going to take the unpopular position here and say that Art Rooney is 100% on this one. The "balance" that he refers to is absolutely essential. It's the difference between accommodating an individual's personal beliefs, without allowing an employee to piss off the customers. That's the same balance that I'd hope any organization -- for-profit or otherwise -- would follow as well.
 

JoePoulson

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I’ve ended friendships over this. It sucks. Some friends I’ve known for 25 + years but I can’t respect someone who still supports a bigot.
My parents both voted for Trump and while not surprising since they've seemingly devolved over the last 30+ years of living in Arkansas, it's still incredibly difficult to come to terms with and to accept. It's been so hard for me to watch my parents change so much over the years, almost all of it towards close-mindedness and intolerance. But the vote for Trump...yea I have a hard time now even talking to them.
 

rodderick

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And saying they are indifferent is generous. I don't think that is an intolerant view to say Trump sides with racists, it's just the reality.
Trump does side with racists, I just think it's possible that some of his voters just don't really care about that, instead of finding it a positive. One could argue (I certainly would) that in the grand scheme of things there's very little practical distinction between actively enabling a racist and merely allowing racism to become policy without condemning it.
 

Boggs26

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Trump does side with racists, I just think it's possible that some of his voters just don't really care about that, instead of finding it a positive. One could argue (I certainly would) that in the grand scheme of things there's very little practical distinction between actively enabling a racist and merely allowing racism to become policy without condemning it.
I'm sorry, racism just isn't something that you can "really not care about" without being sympathetic to racism. There are very few traits that I can come up with that an opponent could have that would lead me to voting for someone who espouses racism. Perhaps if Trump's opponent openly supported child molestation or rape, I'd have to weigh the racism. But really, in a democracy what trait could be considered worse in a candidate than a belief that certain people aren't equal.

Basically, I can't fathom am argument that any of Clinton's traits are worse than Trump's racism. I'm open to hearing it though.
 

Average Reds

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Trump does side with racists, I just think it's possible that some of his voters just don't really care about that, instead of finding it a positive. One could argue (I certainly would) that in the grand scheme of things there's very little practical distinction between actively enabling a racist and merely allowing racism to become policy without condemning it.
Trump’s overt racism is absolutely a feature for the vast majority of his voters. And, as you note, the rest of his voters are, by definition, indifferent to it, which is almost more damning.

More to the point, the conflation of patriotism and racism is at the core of Trump’s message on the kneeling issue.
 
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McBride11

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Maybe this needs to be cross-posted in the NBA forum, but I would think the NBA is far more evolved from their stance 20ish years ago. Yes, Silver affirmed they will still ask players to stand, but the Bucks team has vehemently defended their player who was abused by the police. I can't imagine any NFL franchise (maybe the Jets given their statements) being as supportive. The NFL had no reason to pass this rule if they cared about the plight of their employees

https://www.cbs58.com/news/milwaukee-bucks-organization-releases-statement-on-sterling-brown-arrest
 

Vinho Tinto

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Maybe this needs to be cross-posted in the NBA forum, but I would think the NBA is far more evolved from their stance 20ish years ago. Yes, Silver affirmed they will still ask players to stand, but the Bucks team has vehemently defended their player who was abused by the police. I can't imagine any NFL franchise (maybe the Jets given their statements) being as supportive. The NFL had no reason to pass this rule if they cared about the plight of their employees

https://www.cbs58.com/news/milwaukee-bucks-organization-releases-statement-on-sterling-brown-arrest
I can easily imagine Jerry Jones defending a star player over anything.

Seattle gave pretty unbridled support for Michael Bennet after what happened to him in Vegas.

Remember when protestors in Sacramento marched to the Kings arena for non-NBA player Stephon Clark a few months ago? Did you get the sense Kings management was thrilled to give the protestors a platform and never ending support? Or did they look like they empathized, but weren’t interested in joining the protestors in directly calling out the police and wanted them to leave the property ASAP?
 
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trs

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Basically, I can't fathom am argument that any of Clinton's traits are worse than Trump's racism. I'm open to hearing it though.
This is what I don't get. Whenever I hear the "lesser of two evils" line like the process just mentioned in terms of his wife, I hate how that somehow gets anyone out of the question, "why did you vote for [I had some adjectives here but deleted them] bigot?" As you just said, what of Clinton's supposed "evils" are as bad as being a hate-baiting, divisive racist? She's a crony? She's a woman? She's a Clinton? She's probably lied? She's a democrat? She's rich? There are just two things listed there that Donald doesn't also share, and I think there you have your answer for when many people say she is the lesser of two evils. But, like you, I'm very curious to see these people's list of sins ranked and listen to a rationale for why "racist" somehow comes below whatever evils Hillary possesses.
 

kartvelo

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I wonder if it's occurred to the owners that ratings might be being negatively affected more because of the NFL's reaction to the protests than by the protests themselves?
 

Remagellan

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I wonder if it's occurred to the owners that ratings might be being negatively affected more because of the NFL's reaction to the protests than by the protests themselves?
I have a number of black friends who didn’t watch the NFL last season because of the blacklisting of Colin Kaepernick. I thought of that whenever I heard some idiot rant about how these players protesting were hurting the NFL ratings. It wasn’t all crackers with their knickers in a twist over ungrateful field hands who were tuning out.
 

fairlee76

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And I'm not saying it was poorly done because of what I think but because no coherent message got across to the average viewer.
As others have stated, many of the NFL's average viewers are willfully ignorant. Hell, a lot of them are folks that have bought into the insane notion that DJT is a champion of the white working class. Not sure you are going to get any message besides "lock her up!" or "#maga" across to them.
 

amh03

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I wonder if it's occurred to the owners that ratings might be being negatively affected more because of the NFL's reaction to the protests than by the protests themselves?
With the reversal on betting, they're likely thinking viewership will rise, so it could have been timed to absorb any departing viewers for this.

For folks who will stop watching, are you letting the NFL know?
 

InstaFace

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This is what I don't get. Whenever I hear the "lesser of two evils" line like the process just mentioned in terms of his wife, I hate how that somehow gets anyone out of the question, "why did you vote for [I had some adjectives here but deleted them] bigot?" As you just said, what of Clinton's supposed "evils" are as bad as being a hate-baiting, divisive racist? She's a crony? She's a woman? She's a Clinton? She's probably lied? She's a democrat? She's rich? There are just two things listed there that Donald doesn't also share, and I think there you have your answer for when many people say she is the lesser of two evils. But, like you, I'm very curious to see these people's list of sins ranked and listen to a rationale for why "racist" somehow comes below whatever evils Hillary possesses.
"Clinton" and "Rich"?
 

trs

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"Clinton" and "Rich"?
No... "Rich" and "woman." Get with the times, Donald actually is a Clinton. This is all just one big sibling rivalry -- name-calling, imitating each other, etc.

Good catch, was writing that too early in the morning. Three things, not two things, but that kinda diminishes the drama of the claim, not that there was much to start. Though I suppose Donald WAS a democrat for awhile, right?
 

Rough Carrigan

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As others have stated, many of the NFL's average viewers are willfully ignorant. Hell, a lot of them are folks that have bought into the insane notion that DJT is a champion of the white working class. Not sure you are going to get any message besides "lock her up!" or "#maga" across to them.
I had the same general problem with the Occupy Wall Street protests.
The big banks in the U.S. should have all been declared bankrupt and taken into receivership in 2008. There should have been hundreds, if not thousands, of Wall Street execs sent to hard time prisons shortly thereafter. None of that happened. I had every sympathy with the OWS protestors but quickly found them to be excruciating. They absolutely refused to come up with any specific list of grievances, for whatever reason, even when a huge majority of the populace probably would've supported them. And then, eventually authoritarian asshole Bloomberg ran them out.

The NFL players made a similar mistake though not to the same degree. State a grievance. Say what you want to address it. Let it be simple and clear. Calls to say that people should have to try to find out what exactly's desired are arrogant. If people are willfully ignorant (not necessarily disagreeing) then obviously it behooves someone protesting to make it clear over and over just what the grievance is and just what the desired change is. Because if you believe that people are willfully ignorant but you don't take those steps then it's quite possible that you're just indulging in virtue signalling.

And, again, protesting at your work place on company time will get you penalized in some way and that's not a restriction of your rights. And it's not even unreasonable that that's the case. If nfl players were protesting every . . Wednesday evening or some time not at their employer's facility and the owners penalized them, that would be an unlawful restriction of their right to free speech.

As to Trump, the Clintons sold out U.S. jobs to China and overseas. The Bushes sold out U.S. jobs to China and overseas. Obama sold out U.S. jobs to China and overseas. Presented with the choice of one of the Clintons who is saying nothing about protecting U.S. jobs and someone who is not part of the game saying he's going to protect U.S. jobs (we'll see), it was not insane for someone to think that Trump would be a better choice to do that. But don't worry there are still lots of reasons to hate anyone in the white working class and thousands of different ways to express that hate as a virtue signal of superiority to them.
 

slowstrung

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And, again, protesting at your work place on company time will get you penalized in some way and that's not a restriction of your rights. And it's not even unreasonable that that's the case. If nfl players were protesting every . . Wednesday evening or some time not at their employer's facility and the owners penalized them, that would be an unlawful restriction of their right to free speech.
I have no legal knowledge or training so I may be way off base, but is this really a valid argument? The NFL held a decades-long antitrust exemption and has publically funded stadiums. Can they legitimately make the "private employer / company time" case against protesting?
 

Reverend

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With the reversal on betting, they're likely thinking viewership will rise, so it could have been timed to absorb any departing viewers for this.

For folks who will stop watching, are you letting the NFL know?
You just inspired me to contact the NFL to tell them that I refuse to order DirectTV because of them.*

[Disclosure: I have never purchased DirectTV. But NOW I REFUSE!]

*I'm trying to figure out how many channels I can do this over. FaceBook, Twitter, phone? Maybe I'll fax them...
 

accidentalsuccess

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No. All 45 supporters aren’t racist. However, all racists support 45. So there in which is the conundrum. But if someone voted for 45 and still haven’t seen the light then I just have to assume that you’re a narcissist piece of shit and yeah probably a racist too.

I’ve ended friendships over this. It sucks. Some friends I’ve known for 25 + years but I can’t respect someone who still supports a bigot.

I'm in the same boat. I like the way Scalzi frames it here: https://whatever.scalzi.com/2016/11/10/the-cinemax-theory-of-racism/

the critical piece:

"Let’s say you want HBO. So you go to your local cable provider to get HBO and the only way they’ll let you get HBO is to sign up for a premium channel package, which includes HBO but also includes Cinemax. Now, maybe you don’t want Cinemax, and you don’t care about Cinemax, and maybe never personally plan to ever watch Cinemax, but the deal is: If you want HBO, you have to sign on to Cinemax too. You have to be a Cinemax subscriber to get HBO. And you go ahead and sign up for the premium channel package.

Pop quiz: In this scenario, did you just subscribe to Cinemax?"
 

Reverend

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I'm in the same boat. I like the way Scalzi frames it here: https://whatever.scalzi.com/2016/11/10/the-cinemax-theory-of-racism/

the critical piece:

"Let’s say you want HBO. So you go to your local cable provider to get HBO and the only way they’ll let you get HBO is to sign up for a premium channel package, which includes HBO but also includes Cinemax. Now, maybe you don’t want Cinemax, and you don’t care about Cinemax, and maybe never personally plan to ever watch Cinemax, but the deal is: If you want HBO, you have to sign on to Cinemax too. You have to be a Cinemax subscriber to get HBO. And you go ahead and sign up for the premium channel package.

Pop quiz: In this scenario, did you just subscribe to Cinemax?"
Alternative question: Are you supporting Cinemax?
 

edmunddantes

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I'm in the same boat. I like the way Scalzi frames it here: https://whatever.scalzi.com/2016/11/10/the-cinemax-theory-of-racism/

the critical piece:

"Let’s say you want HBO. So you go to your local cable provider to get HBO and the only way they’ll let you get HBO is to sign up for a premium channel package, which includes HBO but also includes Cinemax. Now, maybe you don’t want Cinemax, and you don’t care about Cinemax, and maybe never personally plan to ever watch Cinemax, but the deal is: If you want HBO, you have to sign on to Cinemax too. You have to be a Cinemax subscriber to get HBO. And you go ahead and sign up for the premium channel package.

Pop quiz: In this scenario, did you just subscribe to Cinemax?"
go read the bolded again and put the original word "racism" back in for Cinemax, and get back to us as to what the implications of that mean for you as a person.
 

The Social Chair

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I can easily imagine Jerry Jones defending a star player over anything.

Seattle gave pretty unbridled support for Michael Bennet after what happened to him in Vegas.

Remember when protestors in Sacramento marched to the Kings arena for non-NBA player Stephon Clark a few months ago? Did you get the sense Kings management was thrilled to give the protestors a platform and never ending support? Or did they look like they empathized, but weren’t interested in joining the protestors in directly calling out the police and wanted them to leave the property ASAP?

The Celtics and Kings put this together.
 

Tyrone Biggums

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I just want all of this to go back to two years ago where racists weren’t emboldened by 45. Was Hillary the best candidate? No. But despite a questionable past she at least didn’t have dictator like ideals. I just read today that Trump’s administration is forcing immigrants to wear identifiers. Which sounds very familiar. This is a sad sad world we live in right now. The only thing that can change it is the blue wave in November. Regardless of who it is please vote blue.

Maybe then the NFL will have some sense knocked back on it to turn it’s back on it’s racist ways. The owners who all support 45 (let’s face it they all do), hell even Belichick and Brady might not be racist but they support institutional racism by supporting 45.
 

Rough Carrigan

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I have no legal knowledge or training so I may be way off base, but is this really a valid argument? The NFL held a decades-long antitrust exemption and has publically funded stadiums. Can they legitimately make the "private employer / company time" case against protesting?
I don't see how that matters and I don't think any sports league should have an antitrust exemption and I don't think any stadium anywhere should be publicly funded for even a dime. A person can freely associate with someone else and take a different job if they don't like it. I don't think the nfl being this weird, Frankenstein monster of benefits stitched together changes that because it's still legally a private entity even though it gorges at the public trough.
 

Hendu for Kutch

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Is standing for the anthem listed as one of the duties or responsibilities in the individual or union contracts? It doesn't sound like it is or these new rules wouldn't be necessary. Are they being paid per anthem? I don't understand how they're obligated to stand, even for a private entity, unless contractually obligated to do so. If it's in a contract somewhere, so be it, but I think we'd have heard about that by now.
 

Leather

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You mean the History Channel? Is it ok if everything is about cool Nazi shit, but they still always lose?
I watched Das Boot last night (well, part of it; it’s lIke 5 hours long) and sort of wondered the same thing. I root for the guys on the sub to live (except the one outspoken Nazi), but should I?
 

shaggydog2000

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I watched Das Boot last night (well, part of it; it’s lIke 5 hours long) and sort of wondered the same thing. I root for the guys on the sub to live (except the one outspoken Nazi), but should I?
You should. They're average schlubs stuck in a tin can under the ocean just trying to get by. The 5 hours are well worth it.
 

JakeRae

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snip

And, again, protesting at your work place on company time will get you penalized in some way and that's not a restriction of your rights. And it's not even unreasonable that that's the case. If nfl players were protesting every . . Wednesday evening or some time not at their employer's facility and the owners penalized them, that would be an unlawful restriction of their right to free speech.

Snip
Ignoring the incorrect legal assertion, the problem here is not a general issue of a business enforcing established behavioral norms. The NFL did not have a policy against political protest. They did not have a policy about standing for the national anthem. Protests began targeting a specific cause, which was police brutality and state violence against innocent black civilians. The NFL has, in response, enacted a targeted policy to stifle that expression, and more or less only that expression.

Falling back on their right to dictate workplace norms is a craven unwillingness to recognize what they are doing. What they are doing is targeting black player speech and deliberately silencing it because white members of their audience are offended that black people don't want to be killed by the police anymore.

Intent matters. This rule has a clear intent. That intent is unmistakably and unquestionably racist. If you are ok supporting a league that has declared that they are operating under the flag of racism, that is ok. It doesn't make you racist. It does mean that you have decided that your personal entertainment matters more than opposing the virulent disease that is racism in this country.
 

Leather

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You should. They're average schlubs stuck in a tin can under the ocean just trying to get by. The 5 hours are well worth it.
Oh I’ve seen it 3 times. It’s one of my favorite movies. I have affection for those characters. The captain and chief, primarily.