Sports and politics entered a tense situation this weekend as the president denounced athletes who take a knee during the National Anthem to protest racial injustice.
At a rally in Alabama, the president said this to the crowd:
“Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a bitch off the field right now, out. He’s fired. He’s fired!”
Michigan Radio’s sports commentator John U. Bacon joined the show today to contextualize the situation.
“I would say that if President Trump’s goal was to rally his base, then it certainly did do that, as you see on Twitter and elsewhere,” Bacon said. “If his goal was to distract us from, let’s see, health care, North Korea, the Russian investigation – also a success.”
All in all, Bacon said Trump likely left the weekend feeling successful. For the NFL, however, all the hubbub was a “nightmare.”
“The last thing you want is divisions amongst your fan base or your players on the field … and this is a very divisive issue – whether you stand for the National Anthem or not,” Bacon said.
But Bacon said the NFL met that “nightmare” head on, and handled it well by “giving the players the space they needed to do their thing if they wanted to and not piling on with the SOB comment.”
“And look,” he said, “I’ve met a lot of these guys. They’re not all angels, but don’t tell me they’re SOBs.”
Listen above to hear Bacon give his take on sports around the state this week, and especially on what happened to the Lions in yesterday’s game.
“This one’s complicated to explain,” he said. “The bottom line is Detroit got screwed yet again.”