NFL Sponsors Play it Safe- Demand Respect For Our Vets


As more football players take the knee in protest, the sponsors of the NFL have found themselves in a pickle.  Many sponsors are trying to have it both ways, but the public is not having it.

Companies such as Ford, Under Armour, Hyundai, Nike, and Anheuser-Busch have stated they support the right to protest.  Then, they reinstate their support of flag and country.  Essentially, the statements are “safe” since they talk out of both sides of the mouth.

Here are some official statements:

Hyundai: “We stand for and respect individuals’ freedoms to express their First Amendment rights in any peaceful manner in which they choose. We also stand for inclusion, freedom and all that represents those values.”

Ford: “[We] respect individuals’ rights to express their views, even if they are not ones we share. That’s part of what makes America great.”

Under Armour: “[We stand] for the flag and by our athletes for free speech, expression, and a unified America.”

Nike: “Nike supports athletes and their right to freedom of expression on issues that are of great importance to our society.”

As you can see, nobody is taking a hard stance for or against the issue.  Meanwhile, a car dealership in Denver immediately yanked their ads in response to the Denver Broncos protesting in week 3.

Phil Long’s Ford dealership insists it’s just changing ads, but the timeline is suspicious.  Regardless, Long courageously stood up to the protests.  He released a statement that expressed his discomfort.

We are evaluating the events of the weekend. It is important to state that we haven’t fired Von. We are in the middle of contract renewal and this weekend’s events remind us that sometimes we feel that we best represent ourselves. We support Von and his first amendment rights, we know Von, and he’s a good person. He donated a police car to his hometown police dept. All that notwithstanding when we bring in celebrities to represent us we run the risk of being misrepresented.

We, like millions of Americans, are concerned and will respond consistently with our values as a proud American company founded by a war hero (Phil Long). While we can’t control the actions of others, we can be responsible for how we support our nation and community. That is why, years ago, our principal owner, Jay Cimino, founded the Mount Carmel Veteran’s Service center, and is supported by all Phil Long Dealerships. We support this cause not just with our words, but financially as well, and it is serving hundreds of veterans in need right here in Colorado. This would be a great time for our community to show support for our military community by supporting this cause or others that continue to serve them after they serve us.

American consumers are also demanding a hard stance be taken.  The protests are hostile towards veterans.  There is no point in showing disrespect towards those who put their lives on the line or have paid the ultimate sacrifice, for our country.

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