NFL’s trendy protest coming to close?
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In August of 2016, Colin Kaepernick started a movement when he took a knee before the 49ers third preseason game during the national anthem. His reasoning? In his own words he said, “I’m going to continue to stand with the people that are being oppressed.” By not standing for the anthem, he was making a statement about his thoughts surrounding social injustices, police brutality and what the country was doing to stop it. While it seems late to mention one’s opinion on this matter, it is all too current with players still participating in the trend of kneeling.
The debates started immediately after Kaepernick first kneeled, many claiming that by taking a knee he was disrespecting American veterans. Despite those looking down on Kaepernick, many joined him in his protest. As everyone knows, President Trump proclaimed that players who kneel during the anthem should be promptly fired. After this statement, fans only saw more kneeling players. It seemed as if they were doing it only to spite Trump and to draw attention to themselves, rather than any major political issue.
The Cincinnati Bengals made a statement that had been on many football fans’ minds since the very beginning of the kneeling movement. They stated that, “Football and politics don’t mix easily. Fans come to NFL games to watch great competition on the playing field and that’s where the focus should be.” The Bengals chose their words wisely in this statement by not siding with Trump’s brash declaration, but agreeing with most of America in saying that the field is no place to rally for change.
Many other teams on the NFL are likely to soon take the same stance, as poles have shown that since the protest, NFL television ratings have gone down by 16 per cent. While the protest is still lingering, football fans are not only loosing interest in it, but becoming impatient with it. Players are slowly abandoning the trend of kneeling in protest and taking to their usual jobs, playing football and nothing else.