Earlier this month, we reported that San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick had made headlines when he refused to stand as the national anthem played before a game. Within 24 hours, fans were burning his jersey to let him know that what he did was wrong.
Kaepernick tried to defend his shameful show of disrespect by race-baiting.
“I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color,” he said of his protest. “To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.”
Now, these race-baiting protests have come back to bite the NFL in a big way.
For the third week in a row, ratings for National Football League games have gone down markedly, and that’s beginning to give rise to the question: is this because of Colin Kaepernick-inspired protests?
The 49-ers back-up quarterback’s protest has set off a bevy of copy cats which has been a turn-off for people who want players to simply play.
CBS New Detroit says that includes one Michigan man, James Olson, who thought football was supposed to be a politics-free zone:
“I want to say to these guys ‘If you weren’t playing in the NFL, you would be working at McDonalds.’ I think people have had it.
Sports used to not be a stage for this, and now it is, so I’m turning it off. I refused to watch the Chicago-Philadelphia game because they were going to protest …You start to figure out you can get along without football, there are other things out there I can do.”
The ratings drift has prompted the question in another NFL town.
In Philadelphia, where some of the Eagles raised their fists in solidarity with Black Lives Matter-
—they’re asking about what could be called the Kaepernick effect:
“The demonstrations from NFL players have caused a lot of mixed reactions from the viewing public, some of which are applauding the players for expressing their feelings, while others condemn the players for using their platform, to in their view, dishonor the flag, military and police.
The league has not condemned, nor fined players for their protests to this point, but is there a business incentive that may prompt that at some point?
That invokes the question: Are these protests hurting NFL ratings?
Forbes Magazine has been chronicling the downward trend in the NFL TV ratings:
“Week 2 of the NFL season is picking up right where Week 1 ended in terms of TV ratings. This weekend’s Sunday Night Football failed to reverse the downward trend and the same holds true for last night’s Monday Night Football on ESPN.”
In week three of the NFL, the presidential debate ratings set records, siphoning viewers who really wanted to watch politics.
What do you think about this? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section.