Over the last few years, American professional sports have embraced a disgusting trend. It started with football, where many highly-paid athletes refused to stand for the National Anthem. This spread to other sports like a virus, as entitled players of a game disrespected our country and flag.
The results were felt fast and fierce. Americans expressed outrage that these players would so insult our country. Attendance at games dropped, as did TV viewership. But did this teach professional sports a lesson? Apparently not.
Thanks to the COVID panic, fans were not allowed to attend games in 2020. This created an unusual environment at arenas. In many NBA games, the so-called “black” national anthem was played alongside our real Anthem. With no fans to protest, it seems the teams could do whatever they wanted.
In fact, in Dallas (of all places) they decided not to even play the National Anthem at all. And their owner, infamous business owner Mark Cuban, said they will no longer play it ever.
The Dallas Mavericks have ceased playing the national anthem before home games this season and do not plan to play it moving forward, a decision made by owner Mark Cuban that he confirmed to The Athletic on Monday evening. [Source: The Atlantic]
Mark Cuban is known for his outlandish personality and controversy-inducing comments. But canceling the National Anthem? He does know this is America, right? And that professional sports are a part of the fabric of our communities? Playing the country’s anthem is just a part of the experience since, you know, we’re supposed to respect our country.
Not too many countries give such opportunity for people to make it rich throwing around a rubber ball. Even fewer let entitled business owners buy teams and run them into the ground. Perhaps Cuban should rethink his stance.
But, never fear, it turns out Cuban doesn’t really have a say in this after all.
On the heels of news that the Dallas Mavericks had not been playing the national anthem prior to preseason and regular-season home games this season, the NBA said in a statement on Wednesday that all teams will play the national anthem.
“With NBA teams now in the process of welcoming fans back into their arenas, all teams will play the national anthem in keeping with longstanding league policy,” NBA Chief Communications Officer Mike Bass said in a statement. [Source: Just the News]
Ouch. I wonder how chaffed Cuban felt, after being told he couldn’t make this decision himself? Cuban posted some bogus response, claiming he wanted to ax the anthem because there are some people who “feel the anthem does not represent them.” Who—Frenchmen? The anthem is for all of us. The only people who seemed to hate it were super-rich athletes who have taken this country for granted.
Not the millions of viewers who, by the way, support the NBA with their viewership and dollars.
Thankfully, the NBA stepped in to do the right thing. Whether players kneel at the anthem or not remains to be seen (the league will probably stop short at requiring that they stand). But at least no NBA team will insult us by not playing the anthem.