The Super Bowl was last weekend; although, I was not “technically” watching I couldn’t help catching some of it and what I did see made me cringe.
So, I attended a Super Bowl shindig last weekend. I didn’t want to because I’ve been boycotting the NFL for the last couple of years. I went for two reasons, 1) Carbs, my kid didn’t let me sleep much the night prior. I don’t know about you, but when I don’t sleep, I crave carbs. 2) My friends family, love them and best of all they love or at least have patience for my nugget. The last one was what really sold me and it is what my BFF used on me after I shared with her why I was not going to attend.
Before I get to the shadiness of the NFL, you might want to know why I decided to boycott. To those that really know me, you might get the why with no need for an explanation. But to my newer audience, I’m going to break it down for you. I got you boo!
The boycott didn’t come easy, I’m a football fan. I’m a Green Bay Packers fan! Yes, the girl that has never gone to Wisconsin or had to sadly give up cheese for health reasons, is a Cheese Head. I feel the strong need to mention, that it was not brought on because of a “boy” either, which is what folks always assume. I was that fan that watched every game, whether my team was playing or not. I loved football, but even more when Payton or Green Bay were playing. Yes, I was a Payton fan too. He and #16 (Montana) are the only QB’s I have followed when they changed teams.
I listened to the games on the radio, television, watched games on my phone, I would even have them turn on the game at the gym. Yes, I was that girl. I would read about football during lunch, I even tried to understand Fantasy Football but realized I didn’t need that drama in my life. I preferred to watch the games alone, because I yelled too much.
I have Packer gear and my son has Packer gear.
You get it, right? I was a fan of the game.
So, when Kaepernick #7 started kneeling in 2016, I was like “Cool.” I like it when celebrities use there platform to raise awareness on an issue. That’s as far as it went, I’m not a Niners fan so I didn’t care much. Then there was the talk of him being blacklisted. I was like “Na, that’s too much. NFL wouldn’t be that dumb.” I honestly just thought, he was done, his last season wasn’t that great, B. Gabbert replaced him as starting quarterback in a few games. I saw Kaepernick as the Kobe of football, he wouldn’t pass the ball and he just always ran with it. So, I just assumed it caught up to him.
I was honestly expecting him to be traded, not as a starter, just traded. Kind of like they did with Payton after he had his neck surgery. The Colts thought that was it for him, he wasn’t going to be the star QB he once was. Boy were they wrong, he took Denver to the Super Bowl, won, then retired. Like a boss!
Why did I just share this? Because it’s not only a great comeback story, but it demonstrates typical NFL behavior. I was sure #7 would end up with the Jets, Vikings, or Bills. For those of you that are not football fans, these were not high ranking teams back then.
I also forgot to mention that he started kneeling during the preseason, by mid-season more players had joined in. It was also during this time that the Niners restructured his contract to a two year vs. his 4 year contract. Since, this new contract offered him the opportunity to become an unrestricted free agent, I didn’t think anything of it especially since he was having a crappy season. For the 2017 season he did before a free agent. He was not signed during the off-season or training camps, which is usually the time players get signed. By regular season he was still not signed; thus, he filed a grievance against the NFL.
I will admit that by this time, it didn’t look good. Yes, there could be the possibility that his 2018 season was not going to be great; however, I strongly believe that his 2017 season was horrible because he had not recovered 100% from his 2016 shoulder injury. However, he could still be on the bench, he would be a great backup quarterback. Also, if Favre got picked after he had already claimed retirement with the Packers, why not this guy who still had some juice left. It was not looking good. I didn’t watch, much. I think I watched the Super Bowl and a couple regular season games.
When the NFL sided with Trump and tried to fine players for protesting in the 2018 season, I must definitely didn’t watch. Nope, this to me was proof that they were trying to get this guy out of the league.
Now, that I gave you my version of the #imwithkap boycott, I will tell you why I’m throwing shade at the NFL.
I think it is no coincidence that Atlanta was the place that was chosen to host the Super Bowl. Atlanta was the background for the Civil Rights movement in the 1960’s, it was also the birthplace of MLK. There is a lot of civil rights clout there and what is Kaepernick protesting for? Civil Rights, to be more precise, police brutality against the black community.
Now, I will admit, I watched parts of the game. I definitely checked out the commercials. But when I wasn’t talking Avon or to my friends parents, scrolling on my phone, running after my kid, eating, or serving me another plate of delicious guacamole, I was watching the boring game.
Which is why every now and then I would get a glimpse of these promotional clips that the NFL was airing. These clips showed the current NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell at Edmund Pettus Bridge. Representative John Lewis was also in many of these shots, but was also at the Super Bowl. They had clips highlighting all the work that the league does, which is standard for the SB, but for some reason there was a lot of them visiting several historical civil rights locations.
I’ll be honest, maybe they didn’t have that many, and only had two. I still think, it was one too many. It does not seem legit for me, it does not feel honest. It feels like damage control, I should know I took a “crisis communications” class in Grad school. Ha! But in all seriousness, this just did not feel sincere to me.
I mean, how could it? Why would it?
You, NFL, a bunch of rich white guys, tried to shut down your players from protesting. The majority of the players in the NFL are black, the majority of the owners and coaches are white.
According to data from the Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport, 94 percent of NFL franchise owners and 75 percent of head coaches are white. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and most of the league’s top executives are white. Blacks own majority stakes in none of the 32 teams. Only seven NFL head coaches in 2017 were black. Yet 70 percent of NFL players are black.”-Shaun R. Harper, Washington Post
Hence, it would not be a stretch for me to say that this new policy, was about race. Luckily, it didn’t stick as many players, coaches, and owners were not going to tell their players not to protest. Some owners even said they would pay the fine if their players got fined.
But now you want me to believe that you seriously give a crap about where MLK marched? He was literally about, the thing you were trying to silence-peaceful protest. That was exactly what these players were trying to do. Why wouldn’t they? I’m sure these players have been harassed themselves. I know Michael Bennett has.
But here’s the thing, NFL you shady as F^*K! You allow men that have beat women and been involved in animal cruelty to play. But when a guy tries to protest the injustice that is happening to his people, you decide to get up on your high horse? Seeing Goodell parade around Atlanta like he gave a damn about the history that had taken place there, was just complete bullshit to me.
Look, at this point I don’t know what I’m expecting to happen with this boycott. Kaepernick is going to get his day in court, but what does he want? I mean does he just want the NFL to admit what they did? Does he just want to get signed? Will someone ever sign him? Does he still have a career?
Most importantly what do we, the participants of the #imwithkap movement want or expect? Do we want Kaepernick to get his money? Do we want the NFL to admit they blacklisted him? Do we want him to play again? What? What is our end game here?
Here’s what I want: I want the NFL to get their shit together, stop being shady. Green Bay has a new coach and I don’t know much about what the hell is happening. I miss it.
What I want for #7, is for him to get whatever he needs to have closure with this BS in his life. Will the NFL ever acknowledge what they did? I doubt it. Will he play again? I don’t know. If he does get signed, will he be a $16.1 million starting quarterback again? I don’t know.
Most importantly, does he even want to play for the NFL anymore?
PS: Please note that there’s two different boycotts happening right now. The #boycottNFL folks, don’t get it. They have confused Kap’s kneeling for civil rights as a protest against the flag. Not even close folks.