The National Movement started by Colin Kaepernick — protesting police brutality against Black People in America — reached a new level this Sunday as over 100 players, including numerous Indianapolis Colts, kneeled for the National Anthem. This ironically was spurred by statements from suspected White-Supremacist, President Donald Trump.
Trump used this weekend to continue to speak out against prominent African-Americans in the sports industry — following his previous attacks against ESPN commentator Jamele Hill, who called him out on his White Supremacy.
Trump withdrew his invitation to the White House to Stephen Curry, and presumedly all the players of the Reigning-NBA Champion Golden State Warriors. He then unexpectedly used his platform at a campaign rally to sound off against NFL-players who have chosen to kneel and protest the Anthem, following the steps of Colin Kaepernick. Trump called these players “Sons of Bitches” and suggested that all of them should be “fired” for kneeling during the anthem, followed by a call to boycott the entire league.
This seemingly did the once-impossible task of unifying the players with the owners in solidarity with the National Anthem Protests. Over 100 players took a knee during the national anthem this Sunday, with several dozens others also displaying signs of unity during the song. Players, Owners, and Coaches from around different sports league made public statements denouncing the President’s words — including the owner of the Indianapolis Colts Owner, Jim Irsay.
In an open letter concerning the Trump’s statements, Irsay called the comments “Troubling” and emphasized a need to “work tirelessly to bring people together”
Statement from Colts owner/CEO Jim Irsay: pic.twitter.com/uVAHohcQ8i
— Zak Keefer (@zkeefer) September 24, 2017
Jim Irsay did a good job of pandering to the moment, let’s be honest he really had no choice — along with most of the League Owners — but speak out against the direct attack on their livelihoods. Looking a little deeper, one can’t help but question the true motivations behind Irsay’s statements. America loves a good redemption story, and being that Irsay was the rapper Future, before Future was Future himself ( A Pill-Popping Bad Musician ) — and fought tirelessly to restore his reputation after being arrested for a DWI — the next logical question would be “Why Haven’t The Colts signed Colin Kaepernick then, Jim?”
Not too long ago we released an article “5 Reasons Black Fans should Boycott The Colts, NFL” that listed the numerous reasons Irsay and team were complicit in the Blacklisting of Kaepernick from the league. As the Colts have competed for the title of The Worst Team in The NFL since the season started, it becomes more apparent that if Irsay truly cared about the state of team, he would have signed Kaepernick prior to the season even starting.
The Colts managed to luck out of receiving more criticism (see what I did there?) by obtaining talented QB Jacoby Brissett, who has played admirably in the absence of starting QB Andrew Luck since being attained in a trade with the New England Patriots. Even the local mainstream media had began questioning if the Colts needed to reach out and sign Kaepernick before that point.
Even this weekend, local columnist Bob Kravitz called out the hypocrisy of the league owners for speaking out against Trump, while simultaneously still not hiring Colin Kaepernick. Jim Irsay himself made statements disapproving Kaepernick’s original protest, saying “I think it’s the wrong venue- – It hasn’t been a positive thing. What we all have to be aware of as players, owners, PR people, equipment managers, is when the lights go on we are entertainment. We are being paid to put on a show. There are other places to express yourself.”
In other words Jim, We don’t believe you — you need more people — (actually just one person, Colin Kaepernick.) All of this talk from league owners sounded and looked great for the media today, but it will remain a empty symbolic gesture until one of these owners has the fortitude to sign Colin Kaepernick to a contract. The NFL ratings may have a slight rebound — after a disastrous drop in the seasons first 2 weeks — but the league is still very much in the danger zone.