A massive “kneeling protest” is being planned ahead of this weekend’s upcoming NFL playoff game in Minneapolis, with demonstrators preparing to storm the arena to bring awareness to “police violence” throughout the country.
According to a local news station, the organization, Take a Knee Nation Twin Cities, is organizing the mass protest outside US Bank Arena in “honor of Martin Luther King, Jr.” and to express solidarity with professional athletes who choose to “take a knee” during the performance of the national anthem.
The demonstrations are planned for 2:30pm, just one hour before the Minnesota Vikings are set to face-off against the New Orleans Saints.
As the protests swirl outside the arena, it remains unclear how many NFL players will kneel during the ‘Star-Spangled Banner’ during the playoff’s pre-game ceremony.
The National Football League is struggling to regain fans and sports enthusiasts after a disastrous 2017 season. Following months of player protests, the NFL has hemorrhaged support among its viewers; dropping 10% from its disappointing 2016 season.
According to a recent poll, 33% of NFL fans “tuned out” of an already-lackluster 2017 season, citing player protests as the main reason behind their decision to change the channel.
Industry insiders say the “player protests” have cost the NFL upwards of $500 million in revenue, decreased ticket sales, merchandise, and low turnout.
AMERICA’S GAME? NFL FINES Athlete Over Santa Shoes, ALLOWS Players to TRASH US Flag
The “disgraceful” NFL reached a new low this week, fining a professional athlete for wearing red, Christmas-themed cleats during last Sunday’s game while permitting other players to blatantly disrespect the US national anthem and flag.
New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara was fined over $6,000 for his holiday cheer; wearing the footwear to promote a GoFundMe page he created to provide football cleats to underprivileged youth hoping to play the game.
“Unfortunately The Grinch stole Christmas!! After the game I said that I would make a gofundme for the fine and donate the proceeds to charity sooooo…. here we are!” he wrote. “A donation will be made to Willie Hall playgrounds recreational department to provide cleats for their youth football programs.”
“Yeah, they were worth it,” Kamara told reporters.
The league’s decision to fine Kamara over his footwear raised eyebrows across the sports community on Friday, following months of the NFL permitting players to openly make political demonstrations on the field without any fines or consequences.
BLIND SIDE: NFL 'Mega' Sponsor Suddenly Pulls Ads from League
The controversy surrounding the National Football League continued to take its toll on the organization’s beleaguered bottom-line on Wednesday, after a ‘mega’ sponsor decided to pull its advertisements from future games for the remainder of the season.
In response to player protests during the national anthem, the owner of a New Jersey ‘mega’ car dealership decided to pull its ads for the rest of the 2017 season, or until league officials and owners crackdown on political demonstrations during the performance of the ‘Star-Spangled Banner.’
“The National Football League and its owners have shown their fans and marketing partners that they do not have a comprehensive policy to ensure that players stand and show respect for America and our flag during the playing of the national anthem,” said the owner of Flemington Car and Truck Company. “We have cancelled all of our NFL advertising on the Optimum and Infinity [cable] networks.”
“As the NFL parses the important nationwide issues of ‘social justice’ and ‘freedom of speech,’ it is clear that a firm direction by them is not forthcoming,” he added.
The NFL found itself in the midst of a media firestorm last month, following a string of player protests against the national anthem; prompting a steep decline in ticket sales, merchandise, and television viewership.