The thing about political spin is that sometimes it spins the way the spinners don’t like over time.
President Donald J. Trump doubled down his rhetoric against National Football League (NFL) players who refuse to stand for the national anthem on Sunday morning, but fans should be reminded the NFL’s patriotism is relatively new in the league.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell claims that the “NFL and players are at our best when we help create a sense of unity in our country and our culture” but their weekly show of support towards members of the American military began only after NFL owners realized they could make money off it.
In 2009, Barack Obama’s Department of Defense began paying hundreds of thousands towards teams in a marketing strategy designed to show support for the troops and increase recruitments. The NFL then required all players and personnel to be on the sidelines during the national anthem, in exchange for taxpayers dollars. Prior, the national anthem was played in the stadium but players had the option of staying in the locker room before heading out to the field.
Furthermore, teams that showed “Veteran’s Salutes” during games were paid upwards of $5.1 million dollars.