Trump Says Kaepernick a Reason for NFL Ratings Decline, Sports Media Ignores Polls Vindicating Him

Colin Kaepernick #7 and Eric Reid #35 of the San Francisco 49ers kneel in protest during the national anthem September 12, 2016 in Santa Clara, California.
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump referenced the NFL’s ratings troubles in a campaign speech on Sunday.

He told the Colorado crowd that at least part of the reason has to do with Colin Kaepernick’s anthem protests:

I don’t know if you know, but the NFL is way down in their ratings. Way down. And you know why? Two reasons. Number one is, this politics they’re finding is a rougher game than football, and more exciting. Honestly, we’ve taken a lot of people away from the NFL. And the other reason is Kaepernick. Kaepernick.

Trump’s mention of Kaepernick’s name met with a chorus of boos from the assembled audience. It had a decidedly different effect on those at SI Wire, who promptly fired off an opening sentence that made Kaepernick sound more like Gandhi than a quarterback: “Kaepernick has been voicing concerns over racial inequality and police violence by kneeling during the national anthem before games since the preseason. Trump has called this ‘a terrible thing’ in the past. The veteran signal caller responded by saying that ‘America has never been great for people of color.'”

Monday Night Football ratings are down 24% from this time last year. Sunday Night Football is down 19% and Thursday Night Football is down 18%.

Why not include the poll that proves Trump absolutely correct about Kaepernick’s effect on the NFL’s ratings?

According to Yahoo!, fans cite anthem protests as the number one reason why they’ve bailed on the NFL. Doesn’t that seem like a particularly important piece of information to include in an article about Trump linking Kaepernick protests to a decline in NFL ratings? Wouldn’t you want that in there, if you had objectivity and planned to present all relevant facts to your readers regardless of where the fact might lead?

Yeah, you would, if those kinds of things concerned you.

Follow Dylan Gwinn on Twitter: @themightygwinn


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