The military has long used spectator sports to target mostly young white men for recruitment. This is coupled with a strong emphasis on patriotism in such as truck commercials–appealing to the fathers of those same young men. After 9/11 and through the second Iraq invasion this grew in intensity and became just one more reason, for me, to tune out. There is an obvious affinity between the military the violent sport of the NFL, which is probably second only to NASCAR in its patriotic effusions.
People have cited this in defense of the anthem protests, and if the anthem protests had anything to do with the anthem that would mean something. But that doesn’t mean it’s right. The militarization of sports hardly went unnoticed or unremarked upon, but it hasn’t been much opposed.
Today’s Washington Post reports:
Flake and McCain are objecting to the way the money was spent, treating it as a boondoggle for the most part, and the military does look to drive a very soft bargain:
In 2013, a roaring crowd cheered as the Atlanta Falcons welcomed 80 National Guard members who unfurled an American flag across the Georgia Dome’s turf. Little did those fans—or millions of other Americans—know that the National Guard had actually paid the Atlanta Falcons for this display of patriotism as part of a $315,000 marketing contract.
The remunerative militaristic patriotism of the NFL is perfectly consistent with its more genuine multicultural patriotism. Our wars have served an internationalist agenda at the expense of national interest since the first Iraq invasion. It’s been especially gruesome watching this for the past decade, as that group to which globalism is overtly hostile–and, yes, those Christian-descended whites Jews like Peter Beinart find so enraging–is fed into its grinder.
It’s in those godawful commercial breaks, combining the multicultural and feminist cheerleading with crude patriotic kitsch, that you see the contradiction. Do people see it?
But the point right now is this: that anthem might represent what the players hate–white America–but it’s been used, for a long time now, as part of the disingenuous military recruitment of whites that is “paid patriotism”, to advance a worldview and agenda that has been very, very good to them.
Of course, if you can’t see the net benefit of being born in America versus being born in, say, West Africa, then you’re never going to catch on to something as relatively nuanced as that.