An Open Letter to the NFL Players

“GROW UP AND ACT LIKE MEN”

by Anonymous

(Sep. 26, 2017) — You graduated high school in 2011.  Your teenage years were a struggle.  You grew up on the wrong side of the tracks.  Your mother was the leader of the family and worked tirelessly to keep a roof over your head and food on your plate.  Academics were a struggle for you and your grades were mediocre at best. The only thing that made you stand out is you weighed 225 pounds and could run 40 yards in 4.2 seconds while carrying a football, or you could slip down the line and make a tackle with regularity.

Your best friend was just like you, except he didn’t play football.  Instead of going to football practice after school, he went to work at McDonald’s for minimum wage.  You were recruited by all the big colleges and spent every weekend of your senior year making visits to universities where coaches and boosters tried to convince you their school was best.  They laid out the red carpet for you. Your best friend worked double shifts at Mickey D’s or some other minimum wage-jobs that serious students often work.  College was not an option for him.  On the day you signed with Big State University, your best friend signed paperwork with his Army recruiter.  You went to summer workouts.  He went to basic training.

You spent the next four years living in the athletic dorm, eating at the training table. You spent your Saturdays on the football field, cheered on by adoring fans.  Tutors attended to your every academic need.  You attended class when you felt like it. Sure, you worked hard.  You lifted weights, ran sprints, studied plays, and soon became one of the top football players in the country.  Your best friend was assigned to the 101st Airborne Division. While you were in college, he deployed to Iraq once and Afghanistan twice.  He became a Sergeant and led a squad of 19-year-old soldiers who grew up just like he did.  He shed his blood in Afghanistan and watched young Americans give their lives, limbs, and innocence for the USA.

You went to the NFL combine and scored off-the-charts.  You hired an agent and waited for draft day.  You were drafted in the first round and your agent immediately went to work, ensuring that you received the most money possible. You signed for $16 million, although you had never played a single down of professional football.  Your best friend re-enlisted in the Army for four more years. As a combat-tested sergeant, he will be paid $32,000 per year.

You will drive a Ferrari on the streets of South Beach.  He will ride in the back of a Black Hawk helicopter with ten other combat-loaded soldiers.  You will sleep at the Ritz.  He will dig a hole in the ground and try to sleep or live in wooden makeshift barracks which might be lucky enough to have air conditioning.  You will “make it rain” in the club.  He will pray for rain as the temperature reaches 120 degrees.

On Sunday, you will run into a stadium as tens of thousands of fans cheer and yell your name.  For your best friend, there is little difference between Sunday and any other day of the week.  There are no adoring fans.  There are only people trying to kill him and his soldiers. Every now and then, he and his soldiers leave the front lines and “go to the rear” to rest.  He might be lucky enough to catch an NFL game on TV.  When the National Anthem plays and you take a knee, he will jump to his feet and salute the television.  While you protest the unfairness of life in the United States, he will give thanks to God that he has the honor of defending his great country and is still alive.

To the players of the NFL:  We are the people who buy your tickets, watch you on TV, and wear your jerseys.  Some anxiously wait for Sundays so they can cheer for you and marvel at your athleticism. Although many love to watch you play, they care little about your opinions until you offend us, our flag and our country. You have the absolute right to express yourselves, but we have the absolute right to boycott you.  We have tolerated your drug use and DUIs, your domestic violence, and your vulgar displays of wealth.   Many should be ashamed for putting their admiration of your physical skills before what is morally right, honorable and good for this nation.  But now you have gone too far. You have insulted our flag, our country, our soldiers, our police officers, and our veterans. You are living the American dream, yet you disparage our great country.

I am done with NFL football and encourage all like-minded Americans to boycott the NFL as well. Millionaire spoiled brats deserve neither our respect nor sympathy. Grow up and act like men instead of puppets of the radical left who hate America.

 

 

17 Responses to "An Open Letter to the NFL Players"

  1. Sharon Rondeau   Sunday, November 12, 2017 at 7:55 AM

    This message is in response to what?

  2. Rodney Pease   Saturday, November 11, 2017 at 10:36 PM

    Sharon,

    Have you served, did you wear the uniform, have you placed yourself in the line of fire? If not, and I suspect not, then shut the hell up. You have no idea of the level of disrespect I feel.

  3. Salt   Thursday, November 9, 2017 at 4:06 PM

    I’m not sure if the author has listened to Colin Kaepernick (the former quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers who took a knee in the preseason of 2016 and is regarded as the originator of the modern NFL protests) state why and what he was protesting – if anyone here would like to listen and view for themselves, I think folks might find a very different rationale, attitude, and regard for America than what the author has laid out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ka0446tibig.

    There’s been a lot of outrage and flaming of culture wars recently. The personal is the political and clearly both the kneeling players and the author feel passionately about this issue. So let me see if I can listen through the author’s… well, let’s start with just listening. This letter speaks to a great respect for veterans and what the flag and the national anthem represent. Standing during our anthem, ideally with hand on heart, is the gesture of an appreciative and respectful citizen, one who is aware of the sacrifices of the men and women of our military and values the freedoms and protection the flag and the anthem represent.

    I am guessing the author himself is a veteran, or has friends and family who have served, and knows first hand, the true price of freedom through loss of life, psychological stability, and physical health. The limited support and acknowledgement that veterans receive in our country is an embarrassment; what they and their families suffer is an experience that is lost on most. So when the author witnesses a fellow American not stand in respect of the flag, the act of protest is perceived as a dismissal of those sacrifices and an affront to the very institution that gives him the freedom he exercises.

    This is all just my guess and – when distilled – the sentiment is understandable. But it’s important to note that many veterans do not feel disrespected by the protesters, are supportive of their cause, and ask that they not be used as props by critics. “The right for those athletes, and all Americans, to protest is one we all pledged to defend with our lives if necessary. Far from disrespecting our troops, there is no finer form of appreciation for our sacrifice than for Americans to enthusiastically exercise their freedom of speech.” You can find a letter containing these words signed by dozens of veterans supporting the NFL protests here: https://medium.com/@VetsForKaep/an-open-letter-of-support-for-colin-kaepernick-from-american-military-veterans-cda9bffb764c

    The full reality that seems to be lost on the author of this letter is that the experience of many African Americans is very different than the America he has known. Simply comparing the timeline of rights to freedom (actual, not speech), housing, voting, and education, and the average points of stability in the acquired wealth, property, educational and professional resources en mass of African Americans to those of white Americans over the last century and a half should be – at the least – a refresher that the great American experience has not been the same for all of us. Now this historical context is the backdrop to what has been witnessed over, and over, and over again, that African Americans are treated very differently by police than us white people could ever imagine. Please watch a few of these videos and tell me that white people train their children to anticipate this type of behavior if pulled over by a cop: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/08/19/us/police-videos-race.html

    A black man in America is 2.5 times more likely to be shot by a police officer in America than a white male and it’s less likely the victim will be armed. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-nation/wp/2016/07/11/arent-more-white-people-than-black-people-killed-by-police-yes-but-no/?utm_term=.2f9be4069b95

    These NFL players may be “living the American dream” but they are making a choice to protest – in the most quiet and peaceful way possible – the circumstances of those less fortunate. They are doing so by using their status as athletes and arguably the largest platform in our country to shine light on a very real problem. So although the author may “care little about [the] opinions” of NFL players and write a letter filled with sopping, racially-based assumptions he demonstrates flagrant ignorance with his myopic criticism. As Jesse Williams, the African American actor and activist said perfectly, “If you have a critique for our resistance than you better have an established record of critique of our oppression. If you have no interest in equal rights for black people then do not make suggestions for those who do. Sit down.”

    The anonymous author ended his letter, “Millionaire spoiled brats deserve neither our respect nor sympathy. Grow up and act like men instead of puppets of the radical left who hate America.” Though he may have the right to make such statements, he comes off tone deaf and grossly unaware. To him I say, sit down. To the protesting NFL players and the coaches, owners, and teammates locking arms with them: I’m proud of you, I support you, and if you loan me a set of pads and a uniform, I’ll come take a knee with you, anytime.

  4. Sharon Rondeau   Saturday, October 21, 2017 at 10:04 AM

    Not my work, but sent to me by others.

  5. Tom   Saturday, October 21, 2017 at 9:45 AM

    Thank you Sharon!

  6. MacWell   Thursday, October 19, 2017 at 9:02 AM

    Professional sports has become a joke to us (seasoned citizens). I grew up playing baseball from March to October. We had a pretty good softball field, with a chain link backstop, and infield, so we had it pretty good. I loved the game, until they went on strike. I don’t give a hoot why, with all the money the sport makes they should have worked it out. Same with basketball. I switched from baseball to B-ball, then, THEY had to go on strike, so they also lost me. Now I was always watching football because of the season changes, but then, NFL was all that was left to watch and support. Well I say, “good riddance”! Now I have that little thing called the internet. Not much reason to even have pay tv anymore.

  7. SLA   Friday, October 13, 2017 at 10:58 PM

    Sharon, did you look into who “anonymously” submitted it to you, and why?

  8. JohnD   Thursday, October 12, 2017 at 12:28 PM

    Thank you Sharon Rondea for making this article which is one of the best I have seen on the subject available to the public. I received it via email and plan to share it widely.

    Thanks again.

  9. Carlos Perdue   Wednesday, October 11, 2017 at 5:51 PM

    Amber C Taylor is a cowardly hit & run racist moron.

  10. Shannon   Wednesday, October 11, 2017 at 12:54 PM

    Amen.

  11. Carlos Perdue   Tuesday, October 10, 2017 at 8:23 PM

    Excellent letter. I would add a few things.

    Whiny overprivileged ungrateful halfwits in the NFL not only insult soldiers and law enforcement. They insult the American people and the USA. Their protest implies that most of us are racists, bigots, unfair etc. It’s a blame-shifting cover story.

    Imagine the world of these ‘oppressed’ multimillionaires. Constantly sucked up to by toadies and people who to do business, women (and men) throw themselves at them, the owners and others humor, appease, ignore and encourage trashy arrogant lowlife thug behavior, they imagine they’re superior geniuses because they’re wealthy, they hang with other ‘playas’ in the same cushy echo chamber, and consequently they’re outraged that sometimes they don’t get a pass when pulled over driving drunk, when the police come to their door on a domestic violence report, etc. They actually get arrested & convicted less often than other Americans…Hardly because they’re less criminal, but because they get passes others don’t get – being celebrities, wealthy, hooked up with top attorneys, connections with powerful toadies, sponsors, owners, etc to get them off.

    Even with those privileges, it outrages them that they ever get pulled over at all or held accountable in any way. So they blame racism, police brutality, “inequality”, injustice, etc, as an excuse, and hoping it pressures police & prosecutors to look the other way.

    Inequality? If we had equality they wouldn’t be making millions a year. It would be redistributed so they made the national average wage. What, $40k? Or the international avg, what, $5k? If they weren’t hypocrites they’d be offering to equalize their salary to a ‘fair’ level, but none do. Some like Joshua Norman donate the relative equivalent of their lunch money to some cause and then pretend their sacrifice is like Christ walking the earth again. Norman donated $100k to hurricane relief and used that as the basis to smear President Trump’s efforts. What a sacrifice! Now he only has $74,900,000 left from his 5-year contract, plus interest.

  12. tony   Saturday, October 7, 2017 at 1:08 PM

    Amber Taylor, most of us think you are the moron and cannot face reality.

  13. Amber C Taylor   Friday, October 6, 2017 at 5:46 PM

    What casually racist garbage.The author of this is a complete moron.

  14. Sharon Rondeau   Wednesday, October 4, 2017 at 3:52 PM

    To be clear, I did not write the editorial. In fact, it was submitted to me anonymously but I thought it worthy of publication.

  15. barry   Wednesday, October 4, 2017 at 2:00 PM

    Awesome job here, Sharon. 64% of NFL fans agree with you!

  16. Sharon Rondeau   Wednesday, October 4, 2017 at 1:07 PM

    I thought this went out on FB…

  17. Gregg Foster   Wednesday, October 4, 2017 at 12:44 PM

    Sharon, Facebook post would be hit. Share!

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