The U.S. Olympics is about to go full-blown woke. Athletes will now be allowed to protest the National Anthem at the Olympic trials starting this year.
MSN reported, “The U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee will not sanction athletes for raising their fists or kneeling during the national anthem at Olympic trials, previewing a contentious policy it expects to stick to when many of those same athletes head to Tokyo this summer.”
I’m sure the U.S. women’s soccer team will be glad they can now kneel without concerns. There may also be a few NBA players joining the U.S. Olympic basketball team who will lock arms and kneel to dispute the freedom to represent their country in the Olympics as well.
There was once a time when U.S. athletes were expected to represent their country without excuses. In 1968, track team members Tommie Smith and John Carlos raised their fists on the medal stand during the Olympics. Both athletes were promptly suspended from the U.S. team.
Progressives celebrate the change, claiming that the rule to allow athletes to kneel during the National Anthem is progress.
The truth is that the change is shameful.
When an athlete can mock the nation he or she represents, why would a country support them or have them on the team? If the athlete doesn’t want to be there, why make the effort?
More importantly, why does protesting racism involve disrespecting those who gave the ultimate sacrifice of giving their lives to defend the nation? Countless military personnel lost their lives for our nation’s athletes to freely participate in their sport. To disrespect this sacrifice is the ultimate disgrace.
Yes, racism exists and work remains in this area. But two wrongs do not make a right.
Biden may not hold a press conference on the topic, but Trump’s words in 2020 said it well. He noted, “Any time I witness a player kneeling during the National Anthem, a sign of great disrespect for our Country and our Flag, the game is over for me!”
The 2020 pandemic led to games held in empty stadiums. Television viewership should have been higher than ever, but it wasn’t. There’s a reason television ratings for professional sports have dropped drastically in the past two years.
Surveys are now showing a decrease in the television viewership of sports has been impacted by politics. Basketball and football fans don’t want to watch a protest or read progressive slogans when they turn on a game. They want to see three-pointers and touchdowns.
ESPN has become a small version of CNN at times, commentating on whether LeBron James should speak out more on social issues or debating which athlete has done more on the issue of race. Most people just want to see the Top 10, but progressives won’t stop the push.
The push to politicize and racialize every activity in American life is ruining the nation’s patriotism. Yes, we are a land that has had a difficult past on race, but that’s no excuse to protest our flag or our National Anthem. It will be interesting to see how low the sports viewership must fall before networks wake up and return to their mission of promoting sport instead of politics.