It reminds me of when Olympic sprinters Tommie Smith and John Carlos stood atop the medal podium at the 1968 Summer Games in Mexico City, bowed their heads and raised black-gloved fists during the playing of the national anthem. They ended up being kicked off the U.S. Track Team for their actions.
It was neither the time nor place for such a protest – and most Americans knew it.
Forty-six years later, the St. Louis Police Officers Association wants a public apology from the St. Louis Rams and the NFL after five Rams players walked out on to the field on Sunday with their hands raised similar to those used by Ferguson protestors. SLPOA Business Manager Jeff Roorda points out the hypocrisy.
“All week long, the Rams and the NFL were on the phone with the St. Louis Police Department asking for assurances that the players and the fans would be kept safe from the violent protesters who had rioted, looted, and burned buildings in Ferguson.”
Where and how these five players decided to express their opinions was wrong, since there were more than 50 business owners and clean-up-crew workers in the stands. Basically, the players slapped those people in the face by supporting the rioters and looters with their ‘hands up, don’t shoot’ gesture.
The Rams should support their community, not add to the problem – and most Americans know it.