Superrich NFL Owners Botch Anthem Protests Rule

San Francisco   It is unclear what the National Football League owners wanted to accomplish with their new rule about how to handle anthem protests.  The players’ union is clear that this is a unilateral rule change without consultation or bargaining, which should mean that it is dead on arrival and violates labor law.  Player protestors have been clear that they are not happy with the rule, and everyone is clear that nothing about the rule is a “compromise.”  Editorials and sportswriters have been dismissive.  The only happy customer might be President Trump, because this kind of stumblebum move is now a signature strut for him.

The actual rule seems to be that teams will be fined if players protest during the national anthem following Colin Kaepernick’s example two seasons ago.  Players who want to protest can do so by not coming onto the field but staying in the locker room until after the show is over.

I’m not even sure why the owners think this will solve much of anything, even if the players were to agree to the rule.  Commentators will be trying to suss out which players are injured, which are protesting, and what’s happening and comparing full rosters for every game to try and figure out what’s up.  Some owners, notably with the San Francisco 49ers and the New York Jets, either abstained from the vote on this rule or in some cases have said they will pay the fines to let the players do what needs to be done.  Most of the owners seem to have proven that they are empty suits no matter how rich their bank accounts, so this also guarantees that they will still hear no end of Trump tweets no matter what happens.  Furthermore, they have proven that they can be bullied, which all of us know just means there will be more of the same about something or other.

What is impossible to reconcile for the owners is that the players are the game and what fans come to see.  Most fans would not know most of the owners if they were standing next them in the same elevator.  Conflating protests with patriotism was a preposterous play pushed by a very small number of whiners while most fans were standing up during the anthem just to get it over so the game could begin.

It’s just a matter of time before a team simply stays in the locker room en masse to make their point about racial disparity and police brutality, and then what will Trump and the owners do?  Mark my words, this will happen sooner or later when the next young black man somewhere in America gets shot by the next cop for nothing.

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If It’s Not Racism, What Else Could It Be?

Greenville     Why bend over backwards anymore trying to figure out some rational reason that Washington politicians and policy makers are enacting some of their new policies and rollbacks?  If it quacks like a duck, swims like a duck, it is probably a duck.  If some of these policies are not blatant racism, what else could it be?   The cases, one after another, are marching in lockstep behind each other.

The House of Representatives joined the earlier Republicans in the Senate in rolling back an Obama-era rule that had prevented racial discrimination in auto loans.  You understand what I’m saying, they just made it legal to charge African-Americans and others higher interest rates when getting auto loans than they charge white families.  How is that not racism?

Fair housing groups both nationally and in Texas have been forced to sue Ben Carson and HUD to get enforcement of an Obama-era rule that had been promulgated after two years of hearing that amended the 50-year old Fair Housing Act that would mandate that housing recovery money be spent for those in the most need and without discrimination.  Suspending the rule has allowed Hurricane Harvey money to not be spent by those guidelines in Houston’s recovery.  How is that not racism?

President Trump has ranted for months about a caravan of families that assembled in Central America in a march that more than 200 successfully completed in order to petition for asylum in the United States because of violence and attacks against them in their countries.  Trump spoke of this as an “invasion” in order to stoke the anti-immigrant bias and hate from his base.  Now the Justice Department is calling for criminal prosecution of all border crossers and breaking up families.  Trump’s director of Homeland Security called for immigrants to go to recognized ports of entry to appeal for asylum, which is exactly what the caravan walkers had done.  How is that not racism?

I’m not saying it’s a surprise.  We all knew this was coming.  What’s shocking is how blatant it all is.  The level of impunity is amazing.  Watching the clock turn back more than 50 years in front of our eyes is devastating.

Recently I’ve been hearing the advice, “When someone shows you who they are, listen to them.”  I’m listening and looking, and there’s no denying who they are.  The question is increasingly how we stand together against them when it is pure and simple racism?

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Please Enjoy Matthew Logan Vasquez’s Sierra Blanca.

Thanks to KABF. 

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