‘The snowflakes are triggered’: Row blazes after NFL decides to play ‘black national anthem’ before every game to start season
Critics and supporters have been at loggerheads after the NFL revealed plans to play 'Lift Ev'ry Voice And Sing' – known as the black national anthem – before The Star-Spangled Banner when the season kicks off in September.
Bosses have courted fury after an ESPN report suggested they are ready to play the song during games including the season opener between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Houston Texans, as well as taking a range of other measures including featuring the names of police brutality victims on shirts and helmets.
The league is also ready to increase its financing of social justice initiatives by $250 million over ten years, earning a predictably mixed reception at a time when activism and gestures around the start of games, including kneeling in support of Black Lives Matter, have been viewed as divisive by some observers.
"So the NFL will include the black national anthem and 'social justice messages' in the 2021 season," said Tomi Lahren, a host for broadcasters Fox who has millions of followers, issuing a sarcastic response. "That should do wonders for ratings."
So the NFL will include the Black national anthem and “social justice messages” in the 2021 season. That should do wonnnnders for ratings. 👍🏼— Tomi Lahren (@TomiLahren) July 15, 2021
These lyrics bother you??? The song was actually written for Abraham Lincoln. pic.twitter.com/orbay8s1ie— Anna (@candidginger) July 16, 2021
Lahren's words were reminiscent of the warnings put out by former Republican president Donald Trump, who publicly urged broadcasters that their ratings would fall if they continued to promote social justice messages to an audience that he perceived as being increasingly weary of pre-match gestures.
"What the f*ck is the black national anthem?" asked a reader in agreement with Lahren.
WTF is the black National Anthem? I stopped watching my Vikings last year when they honored George Floyd!! And my die hard, Green Bay Packers husband quit watching when they refused to come out of the locker room for the National Anthem!! Done w/football!!— Shelly Svee (@ShellySvee) July 16, 2021
75% of the NFL is black...I think it's about time that the national anthem used at sporting events reflect the demographic of the players.— BerryGirl (@berry_girl13) July 16, 2021
"I stopped watching my [Minnesota] Vikings last year when they honored George Floyd.
"And my diehard Green Bay Packers husband quit watching when they refused to come out of the locker room for the national anthem. Done with football."
Haven’t watched a minute of the NBA, MLB and I guess I’ll be adding the NFL to that list. Until sport can keep it about sport, I’m out!!— Tom Simmons (@Pastoraggie) July 15, 2021
Can't wait for all the fans to sit down during it, I sure as hell will with season tickets to the Vikings— JWC (@HeyNow666) July 16, 2021
A hymn written as a poem by James Weldon Johnson in 1900, 'Lift Ev'ry Voice And Sing' was set to music by his brother, J Rosamond Johnson, for the anniversary of Abraham Lincoln's birthday in 1905, although it was not given its anthem tagline until 1919.
In a divided response, supporters of the move claimed that the concept would make precious little difference worthy of anger. "Isn’t it weird how the only people who care about ratings are the conservative pundits, even though they themselves aren’t affected by NFL ratings whatsoever?" asked one.
Isn’t it weird how the only people who care about Nielsen ratings are the conservative pundits? Even though they themselves aren’t affected by NFL ratings whatsoever?— Logan Yenser (@LoganYenser) July 15, 2021
It’s because their god, t*ump, cared so much about ratings. People are not going to stop watching football or going to football games, in masses, the way that these people want them to. I personally cannot wait for football season to start back up.— ✨💫✨💫✨ (@soontobecatlady) July 15, 2021
Another replied: "It’s because their god, Trump, cared so much about ratings. People are not going to stop watching football or going to football games, in masses, the way that these people want them to. I personally cannot wait for football season to start back up."
Comedian Corey Forrester labeled anyone who was unimpressed by the plan a "f*cking loser", adding that "nobody is taking anything from you."
"The NFL is adding the black national anthem and the snowflakes are triggered – ain’t those the words I'm supposed to use?" he asked.
"They're just adding another thing, and they're playing it first. They're not even saying that this is the closer. They're warming up your freedom tune."Also on rt.com NFL superstar Richard Sherman ‘subdued by police dog’ amid late-night arrest for ‘burglary domestic violence’