The National Anthem Controversy and Sports

posted in: Football | 0

The intent of my sports site was to send the message that all sports should be fun, entertaining and relaxing… To escape for a few hours a week from the many evils that take place in our world on a daily basis… Since this has become a national issue, I now feel obligated to speak out and convey my thoughts.

In our free country and the best country in the world, everyone should express their views on the social injustices that continue to exist.  Common sense dictates that these issues seriously need to be addressed. Both Democratic and Republican platforms make these social injustices a priority during their campaigns. But, once elected, nothing (or very little) ever gets done. Sad to say, but the politicians simply use the segments of our society who are impoverished or victims of social injustices to gain their votes during election years. Once elected, they move on with their own agendas and move away from their false promises to close the gap on existing social injustices. Since our government has become more about “buying” votes instead of truly addressing real issues, I feel that these problems must be addressed by grass root efforts such as the NFL and all sports in general.

The NFL owners along with selected players will meet and discuss this topic in the near future. Wouldn’t it be nice if both the owners and the players association agree to begin a fund to be used exclusively to address social injustice issues? Wouldn’t it be great if the MLB, the NBA, and the NHL also join in on this grass roots effort? After all, sports has a huge impact on our society as these athletes are our “heroes” and represent role models for a large part of our population. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if corporate sponsors of sports begin participating? Wouldn’t it be nice if other entertainment businesses (movies, TV shows, etc.) begin participating? Lastly, wouldn’t it be amazing if our government finally sees what need to be addressed and begin providing funding to address these issues?

While I vehemently support what the NFL athletes are doing to express their views on social injustices, expressing these views during our National Anthem is the wrong forum. When the Anthem is played, it is time to live those words. Expressing social injustices should be done after the games.  Perhaps it was initially the right forum to use to catch the attention of politicians. Now that it has caught national attention, it is now time to move on to the next phase and start programs to begin addressing problems in our society. Get as many entertainment businesses and their sponsors involved, start grass roots programs in our inner cities, show some successes, and lobby Congress to provide funding for these efforts.

A good start is to allocate much more funding to our poor and lacking education system. Improve the schooling systems in the inner cities and have “name athletes” come and speak to these students to honestly tell them what it takes to become successful and contributing citizens. The goal is to give them hope for success. The main challenge to this plan is that public education is a service and not a money generator, thus, this important service cannot “buy” any votes for the politicians so they will continue to play the status quo card.

John Lennon got it back in 1971 when he wrote “Imagine”. Great words to live by and not simply listen to….

My plan for a grass roots effort lead by the sporting industry may be just a dream, but some dreams actually do come true.