I know this is a dated article and the NFL has already kneeled to their resolution for the upcoming year. The article includes a statement that continues to show the insensitivity of the Baltimore Ravens to several fans infuriated with the team.
In an article posted on May 24, 2018, Baltimore Sun Contact Reporter Katherine Fominykh, wrote:
“Team president Dick Cass said in a letter to season-ticket holders late in the regular season that the anthem protest in London was a factor for empty seats at M&T Bank Stadium. The team has tried several initiatives this offseason to appease fans, including dropping some concession prices and touting renovations at the stadium.”
To some and the Ravens, this is viewed as an apology. Apologies usually contain an, “I’m sorry” for a transgression that has been committed.
Well, let’s look at what they did…
A Baltimore team kneeled in London during the National Anthem then stood for the British National Anthem.
For any other city it’s just the NFL being stupid, yet Jacksonville’s ownership apologized. For Baltimore though, the birthplace for the National Anthem, it’s a lot more. Baltimoreans died or were injured during the writing of that Anthem, so Americans wouldn’t have to kneel to England nor its royalty. The tone-death response above doesn’t admit to any wrongdoing.
Additionally, this protest was orchestrated, not by a few players ignorant of the city where they play, but instead by an owner who should be aware of the team city’s history. Thus, it is ownership and management that needs to apologize, yet instead they offer bribes of dropping some concession prices and touting renovations at the stadium. Again, not recognizing that their actions insulted and embarrassed many in their fan base.
The owner and team management believe an actual apology would isolate their fan base. But by not taking responsibility, they already have. I have been asked if the ownership changed would I come back. Not necessarily. The protest was a team offense, so any new owner would have to apologize and recognize that they understand our city’s history.
Until then and while we approach the dawn of another season, I will instead choose to enjoy my time with my family and friends – other Baltimoreans who have found that the NFL is truly Not. For. Long.
Submitted by Guest Blogger Stephens Ruffner Dempsey
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