NFL Rejects AMVETS Super Bowl Ad; Pig Socks Totally OK [VIDEO]
NFL Rejects AMVETS Super Bowl Ad; Pig Socks Totally OK [VIDEO]
My Eagles are going to the Super Bowl! I’ve been an Eagles fan since my high school days in Philly, and I haven’t been this excited since Super Bowl XXXIX, when we choked against the Patriots; however I will not be watching the game. As much as I love my team, the NFL has earned nothing but my middle finger after today’s report that they rejected a one-page ad for its Super Bowl program by American Veterans (AMVETS) due to two “controversial words”: Please Stand.
Here’s the “offensive” ad the NFL decided to reject, ostensibly because of its “political message.” Horrible, isn’t it? Appalling, in fact. How DARE an organization started by World War II service members suggest that Americans stand up to honor this country’s national anthem, the people who serve to defend our country, and our flag!
I mean, it’s not like these heroes fought, bled, and died in defense of this country or anything, right?
John Hoellwarth, the national communications director for AMVETS, told The Daily Caller Monday that despite being specifically targeted as a potential ad buyer by H.O. Zimman, the publishing firm responsible for putting out the official Super Bowl program, AMVETS’ #PleaseStand ad was ultimately rejected without a proper explanation as to why.
AMVETS was given the chance to submit a new ad but did not accept the offer.
“AMVETS believes people should stand for the National Anthem,” Hoellwarth stated. “We don’t insist that they must, and we don’t vilify them if they don’t. It’s their choice. But we’d like to politely ask them to ‘please’ choose standing, and that’s all this ad does.”
“The NFL’s decision to reject this very reasonable message from veterans is both surprising and very disappointing.”
But utterly, wholly unsurprising from an organization that would fine players for wearing gear as a tribute to the victims of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, while turning a blind eye to one of its players wearing socks portraying police officers as pigs.
The NFL claims they tried to work with AMVETS to alter the program ad to its liking, according to press, and they claim they just want to let fans enjoy the game, rather than become a venue for political statements. I would fully understand and support that assertion, had the organization not publicly taken very obvious sides in the anthem protest debate, but as it stands, their claims ring pretty hollow.
“The Super Bowl game program is designed for fans to commemorate and celebrate the game, players, teams and the Super Bowl,” NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy told USA TODAY Sports by email. “It’s never been a place for advertising that could be considered by some as a political statement. The NFL has long supported the military and veterans and will again salute our service members in the Super Bowl with memorable on-field moments that will be televised as part of the game.”
Irony of ironies!
The NFL is apparently just fine with members of the military holding a huge flag at the start of their games. That’s not a political statement at all. The organization is also OK with its employees (read: players) staging political protests on the field during a time when the nation and the fans show respect for our nation. That’s not a political statement either. Neither is wearing socks depicting police officers as pigs, or kneeling, or raising fists in the air like militant douche crackers to protest injustices these players do not face, being spoiled millionaires and all.
The NFL has no problem having a beautiful rendition of the Star Spangled Banner sung by a retired service member at its games. That’s not political either.
But running an ad paid for by men who sacrificed more than any of these jerks could possibly imagine, simply encouraging folks to stand? Nope. That’s an unacceptable political statement, and it will not be allowed.
Folks, I’m an American military veteran. My family serves with honor – a tradition I hope my kids will carry on when they have families of their own. I am also an immigrant. I am grateful for every opportunity this country afforded me, both as a woman and as a minority. I honor this nation with my service and with simple gestures such as standing and saluting the flag when the national anthem is played.
As a conservative libertarian, I also believe in freedom and choice. I support peaceful, non-disruptive protests. I don’t have to agree with them, but I served – and my children serve – to protect the freedoms we Americans hold dear, including the freedom to speak out and criticize our country and our government. That’s a freedom I never had in my country of origin, so I appreciate it more than I can say.
This is a First Amendment issue, but not the way the left claims.
If the NFL was a completely private entity that received no taxpayer dollars and took a principled stand on not allowing political statements at games, or on its programs…
If the NFL – as a private entity that received no public funding – decided all forms of protest were allowed, including letting players wear Che Guevara decals on their helmets to celebrate communism…
If the NFL was in no way supported by tax dollars, and made private decisions about what was and was not allowed as far as political protests go, I’d have no problem with it. The customers (read: viewers and fans who buy tickets, watch the broadcast games on TV, and purchase NFL gear) are the ones who would make the decision to support the players and the NFL or not.
Unfortunately, the taxpayers are not given that choice. Their tax dollars are used to support this organization whether they like it or not. The NFL enjoys non-profit status and sucks up BILLIONS in public money – money that belongs to the American taxpayers.
And that, in my view, makes the NFL subject to laws protecting the First Amendment rights of EVERYONE, including American Veterans who want to place an ad in their Super Bowl program. As long as this corrupt, mismanaged organization receives public money, it should not be allowed to reject any speech – political or otherwise.
The AMVETS ad was not coercive. It was not offensive. It didn’t condemn those refusing to stand, because American veterans – unlike the spoiled NFL players and the clueless officials – actually support everyone’s right to speak and protest. The ad is polite and understated, asking – not telling, but asking – people to stand and honor our veterans, our service members, and our nation that has given so much opportunity to so many people. It is not asking anyone to agree with anyone else’s politics or to support any policies of any political party.
It was merely asking people to show some respect, but it was rejected by the clueless, corrupt, disgusting NFL as somehow political.
Ergo, I’m going to exercise my freedom of choice – even though I love my Eagles and I’m thrilled at them having a chance at a Super Bowl championship – to not give the NFL my viewership or my support.
That’s part of the freedom I served to protect. I hope you understand.