NFL and Patriotism Myths and Rumors Debunked

As posted not long ago, an immense pet peeve of mine is when people spread rumors on the internet. Once they begin to go around, they spread like wildfire, and many begin to use it as cold, hard fact. The #TakeaKnee and #IStand debacle is tearing a deeper hole in our country, and the rumors being spread do not help. I’ve even been guilty of not researching something I posted on Facebook about this, so I’m going to clear up some of these rumors today.

A letter from NFL Owners Saying Their Players Must Stand

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This letter has been attributed both to Clark Hunt, and also to Jerry Jones- owner of the Dallas Cowboys. This meme has been going around about Jerry Jones for nearly a year, and the Cowboys tried to show how wrong people were about it by kneeling before the National Anthem with Mr. Jones, and then standing- arms linked during.

Jerry Jones with his players before the National Anthem Photo credit:AP

Jerry Jones with his players before the National Anthem Photo credit:AP

According to Yahoo Sports, Jerry Jones has never forbidden his players to protest by taking a knee, but he HAS shared that the anthem is close to his heart.

Members of Congress Refuse to Stand for the Pledge

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This picture was posted on one of my Facebook posts by a friend. It was stated that it was Congress, with some members protesting. This is actually the New York senate in a leadership crisis during 2009. More details can be found on TruthorFiction.com. Yes, it is true that these are Democrats who are refusing to stand while the room is being led in the Pledge of Allegiance. It is false that this is currently going on, or that this is happening in Congress.

There have been House lawmakers “taking a knee” on the floor.

NFL Players Required to Stand According to League Rules?

A copy/paste statement has spread through Facebook land saying,“The specific rule pertaining to the national anthem is found on pages A62-63 of the NFL League Rulebook. It states: ‘The National Anthem must be played prior to every NFL game, and all players must be on the sideline for the National Anthem. ‘During the National Anthem, players on the field and bench area should stand at attention, face the flag, hold helmets in their left hand, and refrain from talking. The home team should ensure that the American flag is in good condition… …It should be pointed out to players and coaches that we continue to be judged by the public in this area of respect for the flag and our country. Failure to be on the field by the start of the National Anthem may result in discipline, such as fines, suspensions, and/or the forfeiture of draft choice(s) for violations of the above, including first offenses.’”

News sources such as this one from KREM news have verified that there is no such rule in the NFL books.

 

NFL Players Have Not Been on the Field for the National Anthem Before 2009

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This is one that I failed to check before posting. According to Snopes, this is a mixture of truth and fiction. The truth is that players were not required to be on the field until 2009 during primetime games. This was due to network timing issues. The anthem wasn’t televised during that time. On other games like Sunday, players lined the field during the anthem.

The NFL was given monies by the Department of Defense, but the time period doesn’t quite align with the years given, so it can’t be said that it had a direct relation to what was happening with the players lining up on the field, so I will retract using this meme as evidence of bad patriotism, although I do have an issue with taxpayer dollars going toward recruitment advertising at NFL football games.

I assume there are more memes floating around that contain falsehoods, so if you see more floating around, let us know in the comments or on our Facebook page.