Monday, September 25, 2017


I love football. I love the Seattle Seahawks, a team whose existence came about just in time for me to take an interest. One of the things I've been excited about moving back to the Seattle area was to be able to participate in Seahawks events and celebrations with other fans. So, it was a hard year for me to find I could not in good conscience participate in the NFL during the season that others were #BlackOutNFL.

On my too often lily-white, nominally liberal social media feed, this phenomenon has gone essentially unmentioned, not even to bother explaining or excusing their participation, but taking it for granted. Perhaps others are, like me, just doing it quietly. Much of the #BlackOutNFL activities, such as praying, are not relevant to me, so there wasn't an easy terminology for my decision.

I'm not sure I would have been inclined to announce it and hash tag it anyway. I generally find a boycott to as a personal decision. I'm always skeptical of political boycotts. I think they occasionally have value when they can be implemented very specifically.

In this case, it was just one reason too many, and I didn't feel comfortable participating anymore. I'd say the straw that broke the camel's back, but it's really not a straw, is it?

I wasn't, and I'm still not, trying to convince anyone else. It's fun to watch. I love watching it.

I have people give me very good reasons why they gave up eating meat. I can listen, respect their opinions, even find some bordering on convincing. I love meat, though. It's delicious.

So I've been sitting here, watching the events of the last couple of days from a place away from the games themselves. It's an interesting point of view.

NFL Owners and Executives Who Protested Donald Trump Are the Biggest Hypocrites Yet by Shaun King is great, by the way.

But we come out at this, A Donald Trump Boycott Wouldn’t Just Hurt the NFL.

Mind you, there's a good, plausible conspiracy theory to made that the new boycott could be engineered to cancel out the first. Not one I believe, mind you, but it makes as much or more sense than most others out there.

I don't think anything dramatic will change this year or next or whatever. And you can point to that preceding sentence if it does and anyone suggests I was prescient in the rest of this.

But I do think this is the moment everyone will point to many years from now when football is a much smaller sport with more of a large cult audience, where the tide turned. Frankly, even if there's some other turning point that's more significant, I think this one will feel more dramatic and people will continue to look back.

For me, I can watch Adam Ruins Football here.

And now, outside the bubble of watching football every weekend, that's harder for me to dismiss. Mind you, if Colin Kaepernick gets hired tomorrow, I'm still jumping at my chance to watch my Hawks face the Colts next weekend. I'm not sure that will be true forever, though, and I'm less sure as each day passes.

I know whichever Trump-led conservative backers come from a different mindset than me, or even that I'm a good or understanding enough person to even comprehend, so I don't know if they will have those kinds of doubts sewn in their absence, but I suspect it will still be a change that will make some difference in their perspective, one way or the other.

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