In Trump’s America everybody can get a job, well, almost everybody. How toxic do you have to be to not get offered a job? I think we just found out;
On Thursday, it was reported that the NFL’s Seattle Seahawks canceled a workout for former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick because he refused to stop kneeling for the national anthem:
The article clarifies the error here. The ambiguity was not whether grass would meet knee during the National Anthem; it was that Kapernick would not reveal his plans for his off field activities or his plans for social activism in general.
The Seahawks are in desperate need of QB help. They have Russell Wilson but no backup, releasing last year’s back up for domestic violence problems. Most teams carry 3 QB’s on the roster so Seattle is desperate. Yet they still cancelled the workout because Kap was playing coy. To be clear, the work out was only postponed. The Seahawks brain trust may decide to invite him back for a try out, if Kap is more forthcoming about his off field plans or if they decide the fall out in ticket sales, if that comes to fruition, is worth the price.
I don’t won’t to rehash the “collusion” aspect of this story, only that I think it is hilarious that each team owner is being deposed and having to explain why they do not want to hire a no talent whinny ex-QB. OK, no talent may be harsh, but I watched his last year with the 49er’s, he was dreadful.
These ties in with all the boycott posts we have written about here. CEO’s of public companies and football team owners make decisions all the time about how they will run their business, what products they will sell or put out on the field. If they wish to cater to a social cause or a specific targeted consumer, they can do that. And if other consumers find disfavor with that decision, they should shop somewhere else and let the market spank the company with lower profits for the bad decision made. The free markets should decide.
First and foremost, the NFL is a business; if it is not profitable then it will go out of business. Team owners suffered financially due to fan blow-back last year. Rational or not, some fans saw the kneeling as disrespectful. Again, no need to re-litigate the respect angle, but unhappy fans do not buy tickets. Stadiums are half filled, ratings on stations carrying the games slip, sponsors sell fewer ads or for less money, the financial hurt trickles all the way down the food chain.
Some owners like Jerry Jones have publicly declared that anyone kneeling will get benched, yet another business decision that may backfire. If Dez Bryant kneels, gets benched, and the team loses then fans will not be happy.
I know some will get all worked up that owners can dictate and shape off field activities, welcome to the NFL. I suspect that every professional sports contract since the creation of sports has had morals clauses or other clauses that affect off field activity, all big boy pant jobs do. The military has “conduct unbecoming” which could mean just about anything unsavory or ill-conceived. My past avocation had “conduct unprofessional”. HR departments put in all kinds of clauses that may seem stifling or restrictive but the obligation employees have is to comply or go work someplace else.
The funny thing is that this is all Kaepernick’s doing. He could say whether he plans to kneel or not. He could promise to restrict all off field activities to acts that would not bring disrespect or dishonor to his employer. He could also man up and identify those causes he is passionate about and wants to speak out on, and let each team decide whether he is worth all the baggage he brings.
Or could it be that he knows he sucks and can’t throw anymore? He would rather bitch and moan about him being black-balled then to actually get a chance to prove his worth and have the world find out that he is not worth much at all.