Land of “some” Free

by nnolting on October 4, 2016 - 1:33am

Beginning in the middle of August the National Football League dove head first into controversy. Designed by owner Jerry Jones and wide receiver Jason Witten, the Cowboys wore a helmet decal during early preseason games reading “Arm in Arm” showing their love and support for the police officers all over and most importantly the ones who have been slain.   However, around August eleventh, the Dallas Cowboys were denied their permission to wear the decal in their efforts to support the five fallen officers during the sniper attack in Dallas. Not only were they not allowed to wear the decals for the regular season, they were prohibited from wearing them for the rest of the pre season games. I understand the NFL has a strict uniform policy and does not want discrimination towards anyone or anyone to get offended. The one thing I do not understand is how the NFL allows players to sit and kneel during the national anthem because they believe black people are oppressed against in the United States. It began with Colin Kaepernick during preseason, and now there are over twenty-five players that have chosen to not honor America and kneel during the national anthem. Not only that, but the NFL will not discipline the five St. Louis Rams that walked into the stadium doing the “hands up, don't shot” gesture. If the NFL is allowing players to disrespect our country in the exercising of their right to freedom of speech I believe that they should allow for a team to wear a decal supporting their fallen officers. It is sad to see that the NFL will allow players to bring extremely controversial topics into the National Football Organization but will not stand along side cops and the loved ones of fallen officers. 

 

Comments

I have my opinions and views about this topic and it was interesting to read yours on it. What drew me to your comment was that it kind of concerned me; a "brown" person who loves football. I understand what you are trying to say, but you need to look at the topic not from a patriotic perspective(with the use of the word disrespect) but rather try to understand what they are standing up for. I think it is their right to NOT stand up(the actual act for me is not the issue though and so not the thing you should've focused on). It is not a crime nor is in accordance with western values of being able to do everything you want, have your views and be able to freely defend them. I feel like your paper is too objective(simply my opinion but it is understandable since you needed to do a blog ).I feel like you should've considered why they permitted certain things and not others. When you talked about black people oppression, I connected to my class. Indeed, you need to look at the wider spectrum; the bigger picture. Consider this, the oppression(in various forms; some very subtle others, say shootings, not so much) has been going on for ages. Is it normal they are still happening?I wish you would've highlighted the fact the socio-economic problems are also highlighted by those actions. I guess that they possibly came from an environment where discrimination was omnipresent and now that they are in a position to speak up.... One ought to realize that this is their only legal way to perhaps spark THE much-needed change towards a truly free society.Celebrities and athletes alike are great to spread messages and influence people. Perhaps,you should consider this: there are no possible way to stop someone from kneeling, but they are ways to stop someone from putting decals on equipment. Hence the reason why they took out one and not the other.Lastly, I might not have understood you but was your issue the act of sitting down, or the fact you thought that this issue wasn't worthy of sitting during a national anthem?Perhaps(that is my personal thought on that) they feel like the anthem and what it represents(its context and colonial history) is not an ‘adequate’ given the recent events, Understand also that some because of the reasons stated above, don't have the same pride for their country....

I was drawn to this post because of the title, “Land of “some” free.” This is implying that a group of people are not free, in this case police officers. My uncle is a retired state trooper for the state of Connecticut. He served for many years and risked his life every day to help people. I completely agree with this post in the sense that the NFL is allowing players to disrespect our country. When NFL players protest the national anthem, they are not protesting police brutality. They are disrespecting police. Coming from a family who has a close relative in law enforcement, this is just not right. If these players were in trouble and needed help, they would call the police. It is not fair to the many good police officers out there who do their jobs well every day. If these players want to protest, they should find another way to do it.

This post drew me in due to the title, but I became increasingly interested as I read on. I loved how the post was written, and you wrote about interesting points. Growing up, my dad always watched Sunday night football, especially if it was the Patriots. He taught me about the sport, but also the players. It is funny to me what the NFL lets the players get away with. You can have a player brutally rape someone and go unpunished, but if it is rumored that Tom Brady deflated some footballs, he gets suspended from practice and 4 games. If that is not a lesson about people trying to tear down the best a brightest, I don’t know what is. But, now we have more controversial topics about Black Lives Matter, and people are taking a stand. But it is funny how the NFL lets players pay respect to fallen black people rather than letting players pay respect to fallen policemen. If you let your players do one, you need to let them do the other.

Being in the national guard, i have met and spoken with multiple men who have been over seas fighting for our country. My training and experiences have shown me how different this countries opinions really are. I have also played football my entire life. I always looked up to professional athletes as role models and tries to do what they did. So it really bothers me that instead of promoting hard work and playing football, players are deciding to simply create controversy. Social media and news media have been predominantly reporting the stories of police brutality. This means that the NFL, trying to look on the side of public opinion is going to try to show the media they are as socially just as everyone else. This means that if they have to let players sit and and not allow players to alter their uniform to get the public to like them than that is what has to happen. I do not agree with it in the slightest but is the sad reality that this society has come to. Important organizations pander to public opinion instead of focusing on their jobs.

Few times in a decade does a political issue get mixed into professional sports. This very divided and heated debate has swept the nation. At first glance the Kneeling at the national anthem was something that personally haunted me. Coming from a family of veterans the national anthem has always been a song rooted in patriotism that symbolized the soldiers that have given their life for the liberties and freedoms we enjoy. But at closer examination and many debates with veterans I have realized that kneeling is one of the many rights veterans fight for. Freedom of protest is something that makes this country the greatest on earth. I agree with this post in the point that it makes about the Cowboys. What is wrong with supporting police especially in a time of distress. I understand that the Commissioner does not want politics and football mixing but it already has. Sundays belong to the NFL and it is great theater for social change. This post is very articular it hits many key issues as well as gets the authors voice in the post which is essential.

I completely agree with your response to this issue. The issues of police violence and the perception of law enforcement has never been more relevant than it currently is; the double standard, especially when it comes to professional athletics, is undeniable. People in positions of power are too afraid to stand up against individuals like Colin Kaepernick using words such as “oppression” and allow him and others to disrespect the millions that have worked towards bettering our nation, but they do not hesitate to reprimand those standing up for our police officers. Society is moving in a backwards direction because these double standards that exist. Your opinion is the same one I have; the NFL cannot allow players to such an outrageous act but not allow a team to support our officers. Coming from a family with many members who have actively been involved in fighting for our country, this issue hits very close to home. When someone has a loved one risking their lives to make America safer and better each and everyday, it is enraging to see others take this sacrifice for granted. Even though there have been definite instances of police officers completely defying the law and moral consistencies, the entire police community cannot be generalized. The respect I have for the Dallas Cowboys trying to exhibit this is incredible. I read an extremely interesting article that brought in how this has to do with political ideals, and if you wanted to go more in depth about the correlation I think it could be great! I attached it at the bottom. Thank you so much for sharing your insight, it was very informative.

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/aug/13/nfls-ban-dallas-cowboys-...

What a genius title. “Land of Some Free” is such a true and accurate statement because in this country, do we really have absolute “freedom” in both our action and or words? For example, the freedom to say whatever you want. I feel like your post is more like a summary or introduction to a really powerful piece. Yet, I feel like you managed to highlight on some great points concerning the National Football League and their idealism's. I remember reading an article about this incident on Sportsday.com. The article quoted the Dallas Fallen Officer Foundation, which said that they are “extremely upset" by the NFL's decision. "The NFL had an opportunity to be leaders and advocates for change in law enforcement. These are our friends and our loved ones ... it hurts to not have the NFL fully support us," Sgt. Demetrick Pennie, president of the foundation, said. Personally speaking, I don’t see the problem with adding an “Arm and Arm” decal to a football player's helmet. Since when was it a problem to promote “ love and support for the police officers all over and most importantly the ones who have been slain.”
To be honest, I wasn’t fully aware that this incident occurred, but I found it interesting so I did some of my own research. What I want to know is, why is it okay for the NFL to allow football players to kneel during the National Anthem and for the St. Louis Rams to walk into the stadium doing the “hands up, don't shoot” gesture. Is it just me, or is this an inappropriate and disrespectful act considering what is happening with all this violence going on in the world today? We should be promoting peace and well being not corruption and indecency. When I looked up the picture of the decal on the helmet, I was expecting something controversial, but I was wrong. Apparently, going Arm and Arm is too much controversy for a country that only has some freedom.

The first thing that drew me into this post was the title. Reading this I feel as if it acknowledges a problem that clear and at the same time out of the hand of almost everyone. The discussion of race, or in America the discussion between White and Colored people is a topic that, other white people are not able to talk about for the fear of being called a racist. Looking at it, in my eyes standing for our national anthem shows respect for those that fought for all american to have the right to say, and do what they would like without harming other, it is for those who have fallen protected our country. It seems as though people have associated the relationship between police and colored people a way to describe how our country is. While it is becoming a major problem, people are forgetting what traditional values and have a lack of respect for one another. One should not look at another and think differently. Being an American means that people have the right to say what they would like with out facing oppression from the Government. As for the NFL to me while I do not agree with someone kneeling for our anthem, it is their right because to them they feel as though they feel the anthem does not represent America, and I understand where they feel that, but to me it means so much more than our right, its about those who protect us on a daily basis in the country and outside the country. However the NFL seems to be a confusing and corrupt establishment. Punishment for disobeying rules are either to harsh are non existing. However it seems confusing that they would allow someone to wear, socks that portrayed police as pigs, but when someone wants to do a tribute to Muhammad Ali, or to the many good police officers, or to the fallen soldiers in our countries, its not allowed? There seems unfair standard that people are getting stuck in for others mistakes. I really appreciate your post and agree to some point that the NFL is allowing unfair rules, while allowing controversial topics to be portrayed with no punishment.

I chose to comment on this post because it was very interesting and what I thought of as a unique topic. I thought it was a little crazy that the football players couldn't wear the decal on their helmet to support and honor the lives of officers that have died. I also didn't know of the several players that sat down or kneeled during the national anthem at games. I think this is very disrespectful to America and that everyone should honor the US and be thankful of where they are living, to show their respect, participating in the national anthem by simply putting their hand on their heart would be nice. Overall, this article surprised me and I learned a lot about respect and NFL rules.

What drew me initially to this post was that it was along the same line as the topic I wrote about. I wrote about the defensive back from the Dolphins who wrote about his decision to kneel down during the national anthem. I think your post brings up some interesting points. Like you said in your post the NFL has a very strict uniform policy which we see week after week players getting fined for various uniforms violations. I think this is why they did not allow Dallas to wear these patches because they have precedents set on uniform policy; if they had allowed them to wear the patch they would then have to be willing to allow players to wear patches that support the BLM movement if they wanted to. The reason for them allowing the players to express themselves however disrespectful is probably for a couple reasons one the NFL is a business so many of the decisions they make are “business decisions“ also the players have rights granted through the players union and reps so even though the NFL has power or much of what the players do they don't have absolute control.

What initially drew me to this post was the title. Its title Land of “Some” Free really intrigued me and as I read on I became interested in the post as well. In my family growing up we had Sunday dinners every weekend held at my uncles house which held many purposes, one being we all get to watch the Sunday night football games. Watching the NFL was a big deal in my family so reading what they let some players do really surprised me. I agree that they are letting the players disrespect our country because although they are taking a stand for what they believe in the national anthem is much more then supporting America, it supports our veterans and those serving over seas. I think its pretty interesting the NFL wont let the Cowboys wearing their custom helmets supporting the fallen officers but still allow the players to take a knee during the anthem of this country to support black lives matter when they are both involved with each other. I think letting players support one side of the issue and not letting the others, more subtly even, support the other is wrong and makes me question their reason behind it.

I am glad to see that you are someone that shares a very similar opinion to me on this issue. That being said I agree with you on most of what you say. I have been a fan of football, most notably the National Football League for close to a decade now, which is in part what drew me to your post. Over the last few days especially I have been hearing of the double standards displayed by the heads of the NFL and quite frankly I am baffled. This goes hand in hand with the recent actions taken against wide receiver Antonio Brown. He wore a pair of Muhammad Ali cleats to honor him in a recent game and was threatened by the league with being ejected from the game if he refused to change the cleats. The NFL continues to contradict itself through what they deem as an acceptable means of expression by banning some forms and promoting others. I am currently enrolled in a class revolving around racism and race and can draw comparisons from the teachings for this that might make you think even further on this issue. We see that each form of expression is representative of a means of displaying an ideology. In my class I have been taught that ones ideology should be aloud to be shared and demonstrated provided it is not harmful to a group of people. I do not see how any of these means of expression from the NFL players should be frowned upon as they do not harm people. Do people potentially disagree with some of these forms of expression? Of course, but it is their right to express their ideas. The forms of protest in regards to black lives matter may not be delivered in the best manner, but if people look deep into their meaning it is clear they mean no disrespect to the nation that provides them freedom or the men and women that protect it, they wish to get across an idea that they feel the lives of African Americans are not taken into high enough regard. My point here is that I believe that all of these forms of expression presented within your piece should be considered appropriate and aloud by the NFL. No one form is greater or more deserving of acceptance over another. While I could be wrong in some of my arguments I hope you take some of my thoughts into consideration when thinking over this large issue. I must applaud you for this post as it has really left me thinking this issue over, so overall I say great job and I know you definitely feel strongly about this!

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