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Watch Gladys Knight Smile as She Takes Apart Each of Don Lemon’s SJW Questions


Reported By C. Douglas Golden February 5, 2019 at 6:29am

If you’d forgotten how great Gladys Knight was, Super Bowl Sunday was a reminder of why she’s known as the “Empress of Soul” — and you don’t get royal monikers without earning them. It wasn’t just that the Atlanta-based R&B legend was singing the national anthem. It was she nailed it, absolutely nailed it. I may be suffering from a bit of recency bias, but I’d easily put it in the top five of Super Bowl album renditions. It wasn’t Whitney Houston in 1991 or Jennifer Hudson in 2009 — but for me, anyhow, it was close.

Sadly, even singing the national anthem is a political statement in a Super Bowl where every major performer was asked by protesters to stay away due to the fact Colin Kaepernick isn’t in the league. We could debate the merits of Kaepernick’s absence from the NFL endlessly, but the idea that every musician of note should boycott the game is a rather farcical request.

Knight had already been less apologetic and dithering than halftime headliner Maroon 5, which made her even more of a target for social justice warriors to take out their Kaepernick-related frustrations on musicians. On Friday night, she appeared on “CNN Tonight” with host Don Lemon to explain her reasoning, and it was almost as good as her version of the anthem on Sunday.

The show can be risky territory for anyone, particularly since Lemon is fond of taking the SJW line on almost anything. And yet Knight handled it perfectly.

Lemon, who’s made no secret of the fact he doesn’t really buy that Kaepernick isn’t in the NFL because of his talents and other problems he presents, hit Knight with a quote from Kaepernick attorney Mark Geragos, who’s been vociferously attacking any musical act that dared appear at the big game.

In an interview after Maroon 5 frontman Adam Levine discussed his decision to perform, Geragos accused him of being an ideological scab: “If you’re going to cross this ideological or intellectual picket line, then own it, and Adam Levine certainly isn’t owning it,” Geragos said.

Lemon played another clip of Geragos discussing that ideological picket line and what she thought about it.

“People are going to have their opinions. You know, about whatever,” Knight said, smiling.

“And all I can deal with, all I can deal with right now is what my heart says,” she continued. “I believe in fairness. I believe in truth. I believe in all of those things, and as far as this is concerned, I grew up with the national anthem.

“We used to sing it in school before school started. We used to say prayers in school before school started, and we just don’t have that anymore and I’m just — I’m just hoping that it will be about our country and how we treat each other and being the great country that we are.”

When asked if the criticisms could hurt her professionally, she was similarly dismissive.

RELATED: Did You Know Taxpayers Were Forced To Donate $700 Million to Sunday Night’s Super Bowl Venue?

“You know what? Nothing good comes easy,” Knight said. “And I would hope that they will understand, as I do, that we have a better way to do this than to be angry and why is he doing this or why ain’t she doing that, you know?.

“For me, it’s just for me about respect. If we start denying the anthem, there are so many people that have died for our country and there are so many people in my family that are still part of, you know, just standing for the country, they are in the services and that kind of thing, and just to not say that if you really listen to the lyrics of the beginning, you’ll understand that. We have fought hard for a long time and not just in wars. I have protested myself.”

Knight went on to discuss her personal experiences during the civil rights era — in other words, disavowing the idea that protest need involve disrupting the Super Bowl.

In  short, she absolutely schooled Lemon — both on his questions and the real meaning of social justice. Knight had made a similar defense of the anthem in January when the pressure to boycott was at its most intense.

“I understand that Mr. Kaepernick is protesting two things, and they are police violence and injustice,” Knight said in a statement then.

“It is unfortunate that our National Anthem has been dragged into this debate when the distinctive senses of the National Anthem and fighting for justice should each stand alone,” the statement said.

“I am here today and on Sunday, Feb. 3 to give the Anthem back its voice, to stand for that historic choice of words, the way it unites us when we hear it and to free it from the same prejudices and struggles I have fought long and hard for all my life, from walking back hallways, from marching with our social leaders, from using my voice for good — I have been in the forefront of this battle longer than most of those voicing their opinions to win the right to sing our country’s Anthem on a stage as large as the Super Bowl LIII.”

In the end, she sang the anthem beautifully and didn’t use it to make a political statement against America or the flag. When grilled by Don Lemon — including the implied threat that her career could suffer — she was pitch-perfect, just as she was on Sunday.

Our hats are off to you, Gladys Knight, and may future Super Bowl performers evince even a fraction of your grace and talent.

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C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between America and Southeast Asia and believes in free speech and the Second Amendment.

School Decides Not to Play National Anthem Before Championship Game, So Crowd Starts Singing



disclaimerReported
By Cillian Zeal | May 27, 2018 at 2:23pm

URL of the original posting site: https://www.westernjournal.com/ct/school-decides-not-to-play-national-anthem-before-championship-game-so-crowd-starts-singing/

The NFL announced last week it would require players who are on the field before the game to stand for the national anthem. The decision sparked a lot of contentious debate in the media, which made us wonder: Do Americans still believe it’s important to play the anthem before games?

flag on the fieldWell, if what happened recently in Fresno, California is any indication, fans still consider “The Star-Spangled Banner” to be an integral part of the game — so much so they were willing to sing it even though event organizers wanted to skip it.

According to the Fresno Bee, the situation in question happened when Clovis High School and Buchanan High were playing a championship game at the softball diamond at Fresno State University. 

When an announcement was made that there would be no anthem before the game, the crowd was genuinely upset. In fact, they actually started booing.

“Honestly, I was shocked (when) the announcer stated, ‘There will be no anthem, let’s just play softball,’” fan Tiffany Marquez of Fowler, Calif., told the Bee. 

But instead of just booing, the crowd broke into song.

“Within seconds, you could hear people in the crowd singing and the volume of their voices building,” Marquez said. “There I was, standing in the middle of a true testament to unity and patriotism.”

According to David White of the Bee, it was an incredible sight.

“Hundreds of softball fans took to their feet and spangled away, singing the anthem a capella while the players on the field stood at attention toward the centerfield flag,” White said.

White said the crowd’s reaction was a powerful message of what the anthem means to people. 

“Oh say, can’t you see? The national anthem and the flag it adores still matter to a whole lot of people, and they take it personal when anyone comes between them and the star-kissed stripes. Some are obnoxious, ugly Americans, no doubt. Most of the others happen to think you can stand against social injustice (we do) and stand for the national anthem (we do, too),” White wrote. “Since when did the concepts become so mutually exclusive? Does anyone think anthem protests have started anything more than an argument that can’t be won?”

We wholeheartedly agree.

The national anthem protests in the NFL have accomplished little more than shaving a few points off the league’s TV ratings and make its partners antsy. Have the protests made us aware that some people are unhappy with certain aspects of this country? We already knew that.

Did their wholesale rejection of one of the unifying symbols of this country engender any more sympathy for them for those sitting on the fence? Not a whit. What it did was turn fans away in droves — and the free market eventually spoke. 

There are very few things that we can come together about as Americans. Our anthem ought to be one of them.

When an entire crowd can sing along when the song is omitted, we know there’s something special and unifying about “The Star-Spangled Banner” — and those who died defending it. That’s something to remember this Memorial Day.

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Sponsors Threaten NBC if They Continue to Show NFL Protests


Reported By Kim Smith | November 7, 2017 at 5:03pm

The NFL continues to feel the pain from football players’ national anthem protests. NBC Universal’s head of advertising, Linda Yaccarino, said network advertisers are not happy with the ongoing protests. They’re so unhappy, in fact, that marketers told the network to stop airing the protests or they will pull their ads, Business Insider reported.

Speaking during an interview Friday, Yaccarino said that while no advertisers have pulled out of NFL games yet, that could change. Yaccarino said that although it’s hard to prove definitively, she believes the protests are having a negative impact on ratings.

“I don’t think there’s any way to prove it, but I do think it has affected the ratings,” she said during a “fireside chat” with Oath CEO Tim Armstrong at the Manhattan offices of Verizon’s media agency, R/GA.

She may not think there is a way to prove it, but anyone paying attention is well aware that protests are a big problem for the league. Yaccarino said there are many advertisers who are reaching a boiling point.

“There is a list of advertisers that have made themselves very clear: ‘If you continue to cover the political coverage of the issue, we will not be part of the NFL,’” Yaccarino said, according to Deadline.

“Think about it — they have half the country that is cheering about that and half the country that is emailing them saying, ‘Don’t do that.’ That’s a real thing.”

Last Wednesday, Papa John’s CEO John Schnatter attributed slow sales in the third quarter of 2017 to the controversy surrounding the protests, asserting that the controversy was diminishing the pizza chain’s advertising.

“NFL leadership has hurt Papa John’s shareholders,” Schnatter said, in a call with analysts, as reported by CBS. “This should have been nipped in the bud a year and a half ago.”

Schnatter criticized NFL leadership for letting the issue fester.

“We’re certainly disappointed that NFL and its leadership did not resolve the ongoing situation to the satisfaction of all parties this year, year-and-a-half ago,” he said.

“Good or bad, leadership starts at the top, and this is an example of poor leadership,” the CEO said.

Schnatter hit the nail on the head, and his comments reflect how many Americans feel about the matter. That’s probably why advertisers are reconsidering advertising during NFL games.

H/T Independent Journal Review

Refs Fed Up With Anthem Protests, Walk Off Field When Players Take a Knee


Reported By Kim Smith | October 31, 2017 at 7:05pm

URL of the original posting site: https://conservativetribune.com/refs-fed-up-walk-off-field-knee/?

Two New Jersey high school football officials walked off the field Friday night after players knelt during the national anthem. Ernie Lunardelli, 54, and his son, Anthony, 27, stood for the anthem and left the field after seeing players on Monroe High School football team kneeling prior to a Sept. 28 game at New Brunswick, NJ.com reported.

The officials’ spots were filled by junior cadet officials at the game, Ernie Lunardelli told NJ.com.

“I’m not in favor of anyone disrespecting our country, our flag, the armed forces,” he said.

“What they’re protesting has nothing to do with the national anthem and I’m against it, so I decided to protest for them kneeling and that’s what I did,” the veteran football official said.

“Whoever is disrespecting that flag and the national anthem, that’s who I have a problem with.

“That’s my protest. I don’t care if it’s a baby, if it’s an 80-year-old man, anybody. I don’t care. Any race, color, I don’t care who it is. It’s not the way I was brought up and it pisses me off that people are doing that,” he added.

“What hurts the most is these kids don’t even know why they’re kneeling. I just don’t understand why this is happening, especially at the high school level. If you’re not happy with being in America, go somewhere else. It’s that simple.”

Amen.

Anthony Lunardelli, who graduated from Monroe in 2008, said he thought kneeling during the anthem was disrespectful.

“They’ve got a right to protest and so do we,” he told MyCentralNewJersey.com. “That (taking a knee during the anthem) is not how I was brought up, and that’s not how I was raised. I’m not criticizing their right. That’s just my viewpoint.”

New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association assistant director Jack DuBois told NJ.com that the situation was unheard of.

“I’ve been involved in high school athletics for 48 years and I’ve never seen or heard of an official leaving a game in any sport,” DuBois said.

“I don’t think it would be appropriate to comment about what transpired without knowing exactly what happened and why. I can tell you this will be investigated by both the Central Jersey chapter and our office.”

Ernie Lunardelli, who is in his 18th season of officiating games, told NJ.com he expected to be ostracized because of his actions.

“I have a lawyer already set up because they’re not going to run me out of town,” Ernie said. “They’re going to try to blackball me. I know what’s going to happen.”

Let’s hope that doesn’t happen. After all, if the students have a right to emulate professionals, officials should have the right to protest it.

H/T Independent Journal Review

NFL Legends Put Anthem Protesters to Shame With Special Tribute to Christ


Reported By Davis | October 25, 2017 at 2:38pm

URL of the original posting site: https://conservativetribune.com/anthem-protesters-to-shame/?

In light of the ongoing anthem-protesters by entitled football millionaires, a group of former NFL legends showed the current crop what true greatness is all about. This past summer, 18 NFL Hall of Famers were baptized in the Jordan River in Israel, Sports Spectrum reported.

In Matthew 3, the Scriptures record that Jesus was baptized in the Jordan by John the Baptist.

The group of players who were baptized included Jim Brown, Joe Montana, Roger Staubach, Joe Greene, Cris Carter, Andre Reed, John Stallworth, Eric Dickerson, Marshall Faulk, Dave Casper, Jerome Bettis, Ron Yary, Aeneas Williams, Lem Barney, Willie Lanier, Mike Singletary, Andre Tippett and Bruce Smith, according to Sports Spectrum.

Former Arizona Cardinals player Aeneas Williams, who is a pastor at The Spirit Church in St. Louis, Missouri, was there to help perform the baptisms for the players.

This is the sort of stuff that the media should be covering, but of course they won’t because it would show something other than people kneeling on the ground to take part in a pointless protest.

“Baptism is an outward sign of what has already happened on the inside of us,” Williams explained.

“Getting in the water, literally, your sins have been washed away and when you come up, it is symbolically a new person. The old person has been buried. We rejoice in the Lord,” he stated.

You can watch a video about the baptism here.

This action also highlights the generation gap between football players. The old guard are concerned with their love for God, while the newer generation is more concerned about how many people will like a picture of them kneeling.

The newer generation really has its priorities screwed up. In a few years, once their bodies are completely shattered from playing football, they will be completely forgotten by the American public and will having nothing to show for their protests.

However, the old guard have made their peace with God, and have clearly accepted something more important than a cool hashtag and a 30-second sound bite.

This is the sort of stuff we should be promoting.

This Week In The NFL: Pictures Reveal Nearly Empty Stadiums As Fans Lash Back Against Protests


Reported 

URL of the original posting site: https://www.westernjournalism.com/week-nfl-pictures-reveal-nearly-empty-stadiums-fans-lash-back-protests/?

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It’s not quite the No Fan League yet, but on Sunday, NFL stadiums illustrated the damage that has been done by the seemingly endless national anthem protests, which have driven away thousands of football fans.

Dylan Gwinn, writing on Breitbart, called it the “’new normal’ in the age of anthem protests: empty seats.”

Multiple games were played with clearly visible holes in the stands.

In Jacksonville, Florida, the smallest crowd since 2009 watched the Jaguars lose to the LA Rams 27-17, according to the Florida Times-Union. The crowd of 56,232 was about 5,000 fewer fans than the audience that attended the team’s home opener.

“Granted, this is Jacksonville and they’ve never really packed the house. Yet, even by Jaguars standards, that’s empty,” Gwinn wrote.

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The Jaguars weren’t the only team to suffer this fate. As can be seen below, many other stadiums experienced a visible drop in attendance.

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“The fact that those same levels of emptiness can be seen at other stadiums throughout the league, means that the fan backlash against the NFL has now turned everyone into Jacksonville. That’s a problem,” Gwinn wrote.

Not so, said Jacksonville defensive tackle Malik Jackson.

“We only worry about the people who come support us,” he said. “If you don’t want to come support us because of the views we have off the field, that’s your problem and I think you have to look at yourself.”

The lackluster attendance has added to the NFL’s concerns as it approaches a lease meeting at which the protests will be discussed. However, the league has already indicated it is not likely to require players to stand, as demanded by President Donald Trump.

CBS Sports quoted a source predicting how the meetings might go.

“Basically, the message from the NFL is going to be that it has empathy for its players and the situation they now find themselves in,” the source said. “And therefore you’ve seen no enforcement of the rule about the anthem in the gameday manual. But now this has morphed into something that is seen as divisive and disrespectful toward the flag and our servicemen and women by a segment of the country, and that’s not what was intended by the players or the NFL.

“So the league is going to encourage the players to follow the gameday manual and vow to continue to engage directly with players and the NFLPA on a platform to work for positive change in their communities. It’s not going to be – ‘If you don’t stand then you are going to get fined.’ Some owners might favor that, but that’s not the intention here,” the source added.

NFL Suffers Rating Declines as Views Shut Them Off


‘Monday Night Football’ Ratings Plummet To Season Low

Reported by Photo of Katie Jerkovich Katie Jerkovich | Entertainment Reporter | 2:00 PM 10/10/2017

CHICAGO, IL – OCTOBER 09: Mitchell Trubisky #10 and Cody Whitehair #65 of the Chicago Bears celebrate after scoring against the Minnesota Vikings in the fourth quarter at Soldier Field on October 9, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. The Minnesota Vikings defeated the Chicago Bears 20-17. (Photo by Jon Durr/Getty Images)

 

Ratings for “Monday Night Football” plummeted to a season low in Week 5, despite the well promoted release of “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” trailer during the game.

According to Deadline, ESPN walked away with ratings that were 17 percent lower than the “MNF” game just the week before. (RELATED: ‘Monday Night Football’ Ratings Down)

CHICAGO, IL – OCTOBER 09: Storm troopers take the field during a special halftime showing of the new Star Wars movie Star Wars: The Last Jedi at Soldier Field during the game between the Chicago Bears and the Minnesota Vikings on October 9, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Kena Krutsinger/Getty Images)

CHICAGO, IL – OCTOBER 09: Storm troopers take the field during a special halftime showing of the new Star Wars movie Star Wars: The Last Jedi at Soldier Field during the game between the Chicago Bears and the Minnesota Vikings on October 9, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Kena Krutsinger/Getty Images)

The Monday night game, between the Bears and Vikings, pulled in 11.9 million viewers, with a 4.3 rating in the key demographic of ages 18-49. The 2017-2018 season has seen ratings fall significantly as a result of national anthem protests by players.

However, it’s not all bad news for the National Football League and ESPN. Last night’s game was actually 8 percent higher than the week 5 Monday night game a year ago between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Carolina Panthers.

 

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