Arete, Sport and Society, American Sport History, National Anthem, NFL, Colin Kaepernick, Blacklisting of athletes, Black Lives Matter, Free speech, Patriotism, Star-Spangled Banner, Jay-Z, Hypocrisy, ROC Nation, Greed


National Football League; Blacklisting of athletes; Star-spangled banner (Song); Patriotism; Freedom of speech; Kaepernick, Colin, 1987-; Black lives matter movement; Jay-Z, 1969-; ROC Nation; Avarice; Hypocrisy


The National Football League is about to begin its 100th season of play. This will be celebrated ad nauseam and the 2020-2021 season will be celebrated as the 100th Anniversary season of the NFL. The marketing folks at the NFL no doubt spend weeks and months figuring out how to milk this milestone for as long as possible. This points to the self-evident proposition that the National Football League is all about marketing and only incidentally about actual football. One obstacle in the NFL marketing orbit is the persistent set of issues surrounding Colin Kaepernick and the National Anthem protests. Three years ago, and it seems much longer, the San Francisco Forty-Niner’s quarterback went down on one knee during the playing of the anthem during an exhibition game in San Diego. This was Kaepernick’s form of protest over police violence in the African-American community. He said he wanted to call attention to the issue and provoke some discussion of it. Initially Kaepernick’s action attracted very little comment.

Publication Date


Document Type






Source Title

Sport and Society for Arete



Publication Version

Author's version


College of Arts and Humanities



Creator (Linked Data)

Crepeau, Richard C., 1941- (VIAF)



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