Earlier this month, Cowboys Owner Jerry Jones strongly asserted that his players would respect the flag or, “we will not play.” Well, on Sunday, Cowboys LB David Irving raised a fist during the anthem as the Cowboys got set to take on the 49ers. And guess what? Irving, and the rest of Jerry Jones’ Cowboys, played.
After saying that he hadn’t discussed Irving’s blatant act of insubordination with him, Jones sounded more much like a politician than an owner drawing a line in the sand. “But David can be a very important part of our team going forward,” Jones said. “Ever since he got back off his suspension he has made important plays. We need him out there. I am certainly pleased with any aspect of what he was about today, with his play or anything else.”
“I am certainly pleased with any aspect of what he was about today, with his play or anything else.”
Really? Jones is pleased with Irving openly defying him? That is quite a far cry from the Jerry Jones of two weeks ago, who famously said, “If there’s anything that is disrespectful to the flag, then we will not play. OK? Understand? If we are disrespecting the flag, then we won’t play. Period. Period.”
If one required, for whatever reason, more proof of the NFL’s capitulation to its social justice jocks, these lines encapsulate it well. The owner of the richest franchise in all of the NFL, draws the hardest line any owner has ever drawn on the anthem protests. Then, two weeks later, an obscure defensive lineman defies him, and the tough-talking owner backs down.
If an owner like Jerry Jones, can’t stand up to an absolute nobody like David Irving, then the anti-protest movement in the NFL (if it ever even truly existed) never had a chance. Proving once and for all, that all of Jerry Jones’ tough talk, and all of Roger Goodell’s proclamations, are mere political markers. Laid down by a suit-and-tie wearing colony of half-men who simply want to be able to point back to previous lies they told, when explaining their current lies about their “helpless” positions, to the fans that they’re selling out.
However, something darker and far more disturbing is happening here, than the mere political gamesmanship and lies of NFL executives. And that’s that the NFL has not just surrendered their patriotism, they’ve also surrendered their capitalism.
For instance, even if their personal politics were wrong, it used to be that the NFL could be reliably counted upon to do the thing which made financial sense. That the true color of the league was green, not black or white. However, the thing which would make the most financial sense in the case of the anthem protests would be to shut them down. Since, as Jerry Jones himself has said, the protests are causing the league to “suffer negative effects.”
Yet even when given the option of hiding behind the almighty dollar, after patriotic principle apparently didn’t offer enough protection, the league still opted to cave and side with the protesters. In that sense, the NFL’s capitulation is a surrender of capitalism, as much as it is patriotism. Which is why no fan can trust the NFL ever again. Relying on the patriotic principle of people living with monopoly money, was always a tricky proposition. Yet, the firewall of the people against the predilections and political survival instincts of people who own car elevators, was always their money. The fact that withholding their hard earned dollar would almost assuredly compel obedience, if reason and common sense failed.
Now that the financial firewall has been breached, the people who made the NFL kings upon a mountain, are left with no recourse, and no ability to restrain the monster they fed for years. Freed from his natural restraints, the monster now seeks the comfort of his new owner. While those who nurtured him simply shake their heads, and walk away.