Tony Perkins asks a good question. “If NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell thinks football unites us, then why is his league taking political sides?” The National Football League has had trouble keeping TV viewers this year. There are many theories for the rating drop ranging from concern about concussions to the ongoing Colin Kaepernick controversy.
So, you would think that the NFL would focus on how to attract more viewers for next season. But shortly after the Super Bowl in Houston, the NFL decided to once again wade into the culture wars. The NFL warned Texas not to pass the Texas Privacy Act or face the fact that no future Super Bowl would be held in Texas.
The irony of this is that the Super Bowl this year was held in a city that overwhelmingly rejected the very legislation that the NFL says it supports. Nevertheless, NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy warned: “If a proposal that is discriminatory or inconsistent with our values were to become law there, that would certainly be a factor considered when thinking about awarding future events.”
It is also possible that the NFL is stirring up controversy for no reason. Texas legislators explain that Senate Bill 6 would not conflict with NFL policy since it would allow individual teams and stadiums to set their own policies. Texas Governor Greg Abbott doesn’t seem too concerned. After he read an article about the NFL threat, he responded with this tweet: “NFL decision makers also benched Tom Brady last season. It ended with NFL handing the Super Bowl trophy to Brady.”
Here’s a suggestion. Let the governor and Texas legislators focus on how to protect its citizens. And let the NFL commissioner and his staff focus on how to attract back the many viewers who turned off NFL games last year. The NFL would be wise to avoid the culture wars and stick to football.