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Simon Says Boycott

From the very beginning, I thought boycotting the NFL was pointless. I still do. And I plan to tune in to watch the Chicago Bears get their asses kicked all over the field by whichever team they just so happen to be playing on any given Sunday.

The fact of the matter is that boycotts are not meant to be moral victories – and this season’s “boycott” has certainly been nothing more than a social media fad that has done little to change the culture in the NFL. And that’s cool. If boycotting makes you feel better as a person, then do that shit. But at least understand that there won’t be any major result that comes from it – and that’s the cold ass truth.

The moral victory aspect isn’t the only reason I haven’t partaken, however. There’s also the fact that it would just be inconsistent as fuck of me to do so. The NBA has had pretty much the same problems as the NFL: domestic violence, drug use, murder, etc – including a player that didn’t acknowledge the National Anthem and got blacklisted because of it (Look up Mahoud Abdul-Rauf) . Of course, the NBA has a much smaller player base than the NFL, so the news isn’t as prominent – but the point is hoop stars are doing the same shit. And nobody has said shit about boycotting basketball.

That because for some reason, people think NBA players are more apt to make political statements. And fuck – I wonder why?

Do basketball players have more courage than football players? Is it a DNA issue? Is it the rules of the games?

I’m gonna go out on a limb and say it’s because NBA players can afford to make bold ass statements – literally.

Not only do NBA players make more money than NFL players on average, but they also have guaranteed contracts. Therefore, hoop stars can make bold political statements because they won’t lose pay over it. Not to mention the NBA players union is far more powerful than the NFL players union…but that’s what happens when the revolving door in the NFL is about 3 years per player and 5 years for NBA players. I mean, think about it, people with longer tenures at your company are gonna give a fuck about the long-term effects of the job more than people that are coming and going. Am I wrong?

I say all this to say that: if the NBA players were paid like NFL players, they’d be just as hush hush about the issues in our society. So stop calling one league braver than the other – it’s such bullshit. It’s easy to say what someone else should do at their place of employment when what’s at stake doesn’t affect you.

Anyway. Things regarding this whole NFL situation have gotten even more interesting when the President of the United States aka Trumpa Loompa tweeted that the NFL owners should get rid of players that “disrespected” the flag:

 

And surprisingly, NFL owners responded with tweets of their own that announced their support for anyone that wanted to practice their freedom of speech.

This in itself is funny as fuck, because a lot of Black folks are “boycotting” the NFL because they believe the owners have blacklisted Colin Kaepernick for that very reason – his practice of his freedom of speech. And now, President Trump has requested fans boycott the NFL for allowing players to kneel.

Now we have a conundrum.

I’ve said before that Trump is a lot smarter than he is given credit for. The dude knows exactly what he is doing. And all I can think of is the game we played as kids where we’d try to irritate someone by telling them what to do. The only thing is we’re telling them to do something they were already going to do – hoping to play into their defiance and ultimately get them to do what we truly wanted them to do along. It’s so simple. Yet so damn brilliant. Because regardless of how all the boycotting ends up – Trump wins.

I’m just shocked that all this began over a fucking piece of cloth. That’s what the flag is. That’s what any flag is. A  cloth. A cloth with symbolism, a symbolism that differs from group to group, but still a damn cloth no less. And not only that, but the gestures while protesting this cloth have been confusing in their own right.

You have some that are kneeling, but still facing the flag with their hands on their hearts – so basically you respect what the flag represents, but also acknowledge Kaepernick’s issue. You have others that are holding fists in the air – still standing, however, for the same National Anthem and flag they’re supposedly opposing. And some are just flat out sitting down.

All of this seems to circle around people’s feelings about inanimate objects and what they represent – which is completely subjective. Playing the anthem and raising the flag before a sports event is nothing but political farce and propaganda. It’s just a way to add drama to an otherwise meaningless point in time.

When I turn on the football game, it’s to be entertained by a sport I enjoy. When the game is over, I go back to what I normally do in life. The NFL has no effect on my professional or personal life – at all. So it doesn’t make sense for me to expend energy on something that has very little value to myself or the greater community. If Kaepernick gets hired – finally- what will that mean for me or my community? Probably will mean the same exact thing as if he remains blacklisted. If that’s the case, what will we have won? What the fuck are we doing it for?

In the end, do what you want – you are an individual. But stop telling other people how they should feel or act – especially if it differs from you. Making generalizations about people that decide to use a different approach says more about you than about them. It doesn’t make you any more down or woke. In fact, all it sounds like is you trying to convince yourself that you are doing the right thing. If you knew it, you wouldn’t have to announce your intentions or judge other people’s intentions every other post.

I happen to think it is neither right or wrong. I happen to believe it is all completely a waste of relevance. No result that comes of this will be satisfactory – and I happen to like results.

And that is why I choose to not get involved with this giant game of Simon Says.

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About Halsted Jones

I’m a #Writer not a fighter ■ Joyously kicking down pillow forts on my quest to do the write thing.

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