Here’s What the Media Have Been Missing in the NFL Anthem Debate

The news has been overrun with opinion pieces relating to the recent NFL-wide protest of the National Anthem. Whether or not you believe in the protests, there are facts that have been ignored by the leftist media pertaining to this multi-billion dollar company’s political parade. 

In an article by the Daily Signal entitled, “Here’s How Much Money the NFL Rakes in from Taxpayers,” Jarrett Stepman addressed an issue that no one has seemed to want to talk about since these at-work protests began. 

Namely, the angle concerned how NFL and its players make millions off of taxpayers while those very taxpayers can’t turn on their TVs for a unifying Sunday event without politics entering the arena. Stepman drove home this point:

Since NFL billionaire owners have gone out of their way to accommodate millionaire players in standing down for the national anthem, perhaps taxpaying Americans should start withholding money from the privileged and let them all stand on their own two feet.

And it’s a really good point when you look at the scale of taxpayer money fed to the NFL and how they use that money. Last year alone, the NFL brought in $14 billion in revenue, and yet, tax breaks and government subsidies padded the construction of stadiums and other projects. 

Quoting sources such as Watchdog.org and the Brookings Institute, the article outlined the NFL’s heavily subsidized expenses. Over the past two decades, the company has utilized $7 billion of taxpayer money on stadium renovations, and even further, $3.2 billion to construct over 36 stadiums since 2000. 

It’s not just federal money that ends up subsidizing privately owned stadiums. According to infrastructure expert and Heritage Foundation policy analyst Michael Sargent:

Tax-exempt municipal bonds are typically reserved for public-use projects such as bridges, water systems, and other infrastructure. Yet because of a loophole in the tax code, private-use stadiums can take advantage of this tax break, and have done so prolifically.

As polls come out left and right reflecting the majority of Americans’ distaste with the protests and booing fans/crashing NFL ratings continue, perhaps it’s time the American people take a look at exactly what they’re funding: privately-owned stadium construction and millionaires who’ve decided the best time to protest America is during their subsidized work-day.

What’s more, this issue has been completely ignored by the left. In 2015, CNN Money wrote an article breaking down all of the NFL’s aforementioned subsidized expenses, questioning the fairness of the company’s non-profit status given their immense taxpayer-based revenue. 

Now, the NFL and its players are being painted as revolutionaries for a cause, and these once factually condemning findings are falling to the wayside. 

One moment the NFL is considered a greedy business abusing our taxpayer money and the next they are being hailed for using their salaried positions to protest. Which is it, America? 

One thing is for sure whether it is reported or not; taxpayers are responsible for a great deal of the NFL’s expenses, and perhaps, if we’re unhappy with their use of those funds, it’s time to take a stand against funding them.

Bias by Omission Heritage Foundation Liberals & Democrats Sports NFL
Stephanie Schmitt's picture


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