Over the past few weeks, hundreds of NFL players have taken a knee during the national anthem before their games to protest against President Donald Trump and racial inequality. Now, these protests have come back to bite the NFL as a whole in a huge way.
ESPN reported that NFL ratings have plummeted this season as fans have decided to turn off their televisions rather than see our country be disrespected in this way. In the first week of the season, total viewership of NFL games is down 7.5 percent, compared with the first six weeks of 2016. Only 15 million people on average watched games for the first six weeks this year compared to 16.2 million people who had watched at this time last year.
This comes days after Credit Suisse lowered its price targets on both Fox and CBS stock, citing NFL ratings declines.
“If ratings don’t improve materially, we see a potential headwind to domestic advertising revenues,” the investment bank’s analyst Omar Sheikh wrote of the decision.
President Trump has encouraged his supporters to boycott the NFL until players start standing for the anthem. He took to Twitter to address this once again on Wednesday.
“The NFL has decided that it will not force players to stand for the playing of our National Anthem. Total disrespect for our great country!” Trump wrote.
The NFL has decided that it will not force players to stand for the playing of our National Anthem. Total disrespect for our great country!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 18, 2017
On Tuesday, NFL players and owners met in New York to discuss how best to deal with their public platform and work together to support the fight against social injustice. Unfortunately, the meeting did not result in any immediate solution to the issue.
Frankly, we aren’t surprised at all that NFL ratings have declined, as it simply is not fun to watch entitled millionaire players disrespect the American flag. These players don’t seem to understand that by kneeling during the national anthem, they are disrespecting those who have fought and died to protect the American flag.
Twitter users have made it clear that they stand with Trump against the NFL:
#BoycottNFL will continue in this household.
— Rightwingmadman (@Rightwingmadman) October 18, 2017
— Christian Lamar (@christianllamar) October 18, 2017
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