NFL Rejects Super Bowl Ad Promoting Patriotism and Respect for the Flag
TUPELO, Miss.—The NFL has told the nation’s largest veterans service organization, American Vets (AMVETS), its patriotic ad that encourages people to stand for the American flag and national anthem will not be tolerated.
AMVETS had been solicited by the NFL to place an ad in the Super Bowl LII program. When the submitted advertisement included a two-word message, “#PleaseStand,” the NFL threw the penalty flag at veterans.
Now, through an Action Alert to its more than one million friends and supporters, the American Family Association (AFA, www.afa.net) is encouraging patriotic Americans to sign a petition to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, urging him and the NFL to stop the blatant hypocrisy and accept the patriotic ad by AMVETS as originally submitted.
“Take note of the irony that AMVETS points out,” said AFA President Tim Wildmon. “The NFL continues to claim that the anti-American protests by millionaire players on the field represent ‘free speech,’ yet the league is denying free speech to AMVETS. In fact, the ‘#PleaseStand’ ad from AMVETS was accepted by the National Hockey League and Major League Baseball for inclusion in their All-Star Game programs.”
AMVETS National Commander Marion Polk wrote in a letter to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell that the veteran group’s request was a simple, polite one that represents the sentiment of its membership, “particularly those whose missing or paralyzed limbs preclude standing.”
“Freedom of speech works both ways,” Polk wrote. “We respect the rights of those who choose to protest, as these rights are precisely what our members have fought—and in many cases died—for. But imposing corporate censorship to deny that same right to those veterans who have secured it for us all is reprehensible and totally beyond the pale.”
The NFL responded that the advertisement program “is designed for fans to commemorate and celebrate the game, players, teams, and the Super Bowl,” according to the Army Times. “It’s never been a place for advertising that could be considered by some as a political statement.”
AFA is asking concerned citizens to take action in two ways. More than 78,000 Americans have already communicated their support for the flag and free speech to the NFL.
- Sign the petition to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, urging him and the NFL to stop the blatant hypocrisy and accept the patriotic ad by AMVETS as originally submitted.
- Call the NFL at (212) 450-2000 and tell Commissioner Goodell to run the AMVET ad.
To interview a representative from the American Family Association, contact Deborah Hamilton, Media@HamiltonStrategies.com, 610.584.1096, ext. 102, or Dillon Burroughs, 610.584.1096, ext. 108.