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Calbrooks
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George McCaskey's thoughts on the National Anthem debate
1

*****

On players’ purpose in protesting during the anthem and the new NFL rule, from his opening statement

The first players to take a knee during the national anthem did so to bring attention to two issues — police misconduct and social inequality. There are legitimate issues that deserve discussion and action. As a country, we can do better. It’s part of the founding fathers’ charge to us to form a more perfect union. Commissioner Goodell said it very well, and it bears repeating — it was unfortunate that on-field protests created a false perception among many that thousands of NFL players were unpatriotic. This is not and was never the case. The players’ actions were characterized by some and perceived by some as disrespectful to the flag, our country and our military, and what should be a unifying moment for our communities and our country has become in some instances another source of divisiveness.

There is no easy answer to the anthem issue. No one is entirely right, nor entirely wrong. The policy change enacted a couple of weeks ago by NFL teams, including the Bears, isn’t perfect. But we think it will return the anthem to what it should be — a unifying force — while providing an option to those players and other team personnel who choose not to stand.

On his personal belief about what players should do during the anthem

We think players should stand. We encourage our players to stand. I told them that last September and we feel the same way.

On potential disciplinary action for players who don’t stand during the anthem on the field

I’ve talked with Ted (Phillips) about that. I’ve talked with Sam (Acho) about that. We haven’t made a decision on that. I want to give that some thought and talk to them some more about it.

On what he would say to players who feel the rule infringes on their right to protest

We think it’s a workplace issue. I’ll leave the constitutional law questions to the constitutional law experts. I’m a recovering lawyer.

On his impression of how Trump has injected himself into the matter

Our support of this wasn’t based on anything the President was doing or not doing or saying or not saying. I understand that that is out there, but that didn’t really impact our position on the issue.

On his thoughts on the way it has become a Trump vs. the NFL issue after the most recent flap with the Eagles

After we won the Super Bowl, we waited 25 years to visit the White House and had a great time. It was an outstanding experience. Speaking as a citizen, I’m not sure the leader of the free world should be spending all of his time greeting championship teams and pardoning turkeys and things of that nature, but that’s just how the office is structured.

On the letter four members of Congress drafted to the Bears about the new rule

I haven’t received the letter. My mom hasn’t received the letter. I’m happy to have a constructive conversation with our duly elected representatives. But, to me, the fact that the letter was released to the media before we’ve even had a chance to see it suggests the motivation may be more making political points than having a constructive conversation. But if the Congresswoman and her colleagues want to have a constructive conversation, I’d be happy to participate in it.

On whether he has talked to Bears players about it yet

I talked to Sam. And I wanted to give his teammates ample opportunity to talk to me. I just caught Sam briefly in the hallway the other day and said, ‘Any of your teammates want to sit down and talk?’ And he said, ‘Quite frankly, their minds are on other things right now. They’re trying to learn a new system. They’re trying to get to know their teammates. They’re trying to find out where they fit. They’re trying to impress their coaches.’ So that’s top of mind right now. They still have plenty of time between now and Sept. 9.

On his visit with Sam Acho to a Louisiana penitentiary

It impacted me on two levels. One, again, how impressive Sam is as a person. Just watching him was amazing to me how he could connect with some of these guys. The other thing was the prison we visited in Angola, La., where a life sentence means you will probably be buried at the prison. To give people in a seemingly hopeless situation hope and how they went about it had a dramatic impact on me.

On whether he is concerned social justice issues will become less visible with the new rule

I don’t think so. The players still have a platform on many levels. You see it often in postgame interviews in the locker room. You ask the player a question and he says the first thing that he wants to communicate. And they still have ample opportunity to do that. More importantly, I think they have an opportunity to get out in the community, and again, Sam’s been great at marshaling his teammates and really trying to make a difference.

On his relationship with Acho and NFL social justice initiatives, from his statement

For me, one positive of the anthem debate is that I’ve gotten to know Sam better. He has helped to break down what seems to be innate mistrust between players and management. He has counseled me, debated me, challenged me. We haven’t always agreed, but when we have disagreed, it has been with respect. He has opened my eyes to some uncomfortable truths. And as difficult as it has been to confront them, I’m grateful to Sam for being patient with me and for not losing faith in me. We have been on many adventures together. I hope I’m a better person as a result, and I’m looking forward to our next adventure.

Another positive result of the anthem debate is that it has led to new social justice initiatives, not just at the league level but at each club, with players and management encouraged to collaborate and, with matching funds potentially up to half a million dollars per team per year, work together to continue to improve and make a difference in our communities. We are looking forward to launching that program at the Bears with Sam and his teammates.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/football/bears/ct-spt-bears-george-mccaskey-nfl-anthem-20180607-story.html

I put this in the religion and politics forum because I know some like to avoid these kind of discussions. And I did not post this to debate the issue but more becasue I felt that George did a pretty good job of handling the issue and the questions. To me this particular "crisis" is a perfect example of how the extremists, both conservitive and liberal, have hijacked this country. If more people would stay resonable and not get drug into stupid fights by these extremists and the media that loves to whip them up things like this would hardly be a problem.

Feel free to add your thoughts, like I said, mostly I just felt that George deserved a bit of credit for how he has handled it. 

Mr.Obvious
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Re: George McCaskey's thoughts on the National Anthem debate
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What ? No easy way to settle this ? You tell those players to either stand for our flag or face a fine, game suspension..or both. Its the fans that pay for all they have and its the fans that dont want to deal with their bullshit while watching a freaking football game ! Anyone notice that NOT ONE of these players that disrespect our flag during the season, did anything during the off season to solve this problem they are so worried about ?  Really, they wait until fans are sitting down to enjoy a football game to "protest" ? BULLSHIT !

Braile on drive up ATM's ? WTF !!!???

The Shadow
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Re: George McCaskey's thoughts on the National Anthem debate
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Prior to the 2009 season, the players were never on the field for the anthem. They only began participating once the NFL started taking money from the Recruitment Departments, from each Military branch.  Go back to leaving them in the lockerroom until after all of the preliminary festivities are over.  Then, if they have something to say, they can do it on their own time on their own platform. 

The NFL could simple tell their Broadcast partners to stop filming the protesters.......if you kneel in a forest but no one saw it, is it still a protest?

 

Charles Leno, Jr. and Cody Whitehair are SOLID!

2021 is the year the Bears put it all together! (2020 is a scrub)

Go Bears!

 

PapaBear.OR
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Re: George McCaskey's thoughts on the National Anthem debate
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I think George responded to this as well as can be expected.

Butkus never wore an earring

bearslife
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Re: George McCaskey's thoughts on the National Anthem debate
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My thoughts are there's no debate to be had. Fuck these overpaid out of touch with the real world idiots and any of these other dipshits out there protesting these supposed injustices and unfair treatment by law enforcement. These protests are all based on bullshit lies. Facts,statistics,proof like body cams etc,prove they're full of shit with their reasoning for protesting. If you spend enough time listening to any of these fucking morons be it on the football field or out in public you will quickly realise these protesting idiots have nothing more than opinions and feelings to back up their horseshit. The only reason it's given any validty is because the second someone throws facts and proof in their stupid faces they scream racist or racism and people back down giving these fools the idea that they're right. I've had enough of the fucking bullshit because people can't handle the fact that facts and actual proof matter more than feelings and opinions. If court rulings were handed down based on feelings and opinions the prisons would be empty cause each case would drag on with no end in sight cause guess what everyone has feelings and opinions. I was quite the trouble maker in my past and every judge I ever went before asked what my facts or proof was in my defense not what my feelings or opinion was. So as far as these nfl assholes go keep them in the locker room and don't talk about it let these fucks go out on their own time away from the field and push their bullshit. Sorry for all the cussing but I'm as serious as a heart attack when I say I've had enough of this shit.

"don't piss down my back and tell me it's raining" outlaw josey wales

Mr.Obvious
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Re: George McCaskey's thoughts on the National Anthem debate
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bearslife wrote:

My thoughts are there's no debate to be had. Fuck these overpaid out of touch with the real world idiots and any of these other dipshits out there protesting these supposed injustices and unfair treatment by law enforcement. These protests are all based on bullshit lies. Facts,statistics,proof like body cams etc,prove they're full of shit with their reasoning for protesting. If you spend enough time listening to any of these fucking morons be it on the football field or out in public you will quickly realise these protesting idiots have nothing more than opinions and feelings to back up their horseshit. The only reason it's given any validty is because the second someone throws facts and proof in their stupid faces they scream racist or racism and people back down giving these fools the idea that they're right. I've had enough of the fucking bullshit because people can't handle the fact that facts and actual proof matter more than feelings and opinions. If court rulings were handed down based on feelings and opinions the prisons would be empty cause each case would drag on with no end in sight cause guess what everyone has feelings and opinions. I was quite the trouble maker in my past and every judge I ever went before asked what my facts or proof was in my defense not what my feelings or opinion was. So as far as these nfl assholes go keep them in the locker room and don't talk about it let these fucks go out on their own time away from the field and push their bullshit. Sorry for all the cussing but I'm as serious as a heart attack when I say I've had enough of this shit.

I totally agree, if these "protesters" are so concerned about "social injustice" that they feel the need to display that concern during our anthem, where the hell were they  all off season with their millions of dollars helping to correct such "injustice"? I have not heard of ANY of them trying to make a differe

nce off the field. These SOBS are ruining the sport for not only the fans, but future players...and the owners are helpless to do anything about it.  R.I.P.  NFL !..you are about to go the way of professional boxing. 

Braile on drive up ATM's ? WTF !!!???

me654
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Re: George McCaskey's thoughts on the National Anthem debate
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Lets not forget that all of this started when one spoiled millionaire was benched. It evolved into "social justice" once it gained the attention. in this social media age these millenials are conditioned to obtain all of the attention they can get. Its all about the "hits". Had Colin kept his job I promise you it would have never happened. 

that said it is a work place and you know anyone of us pulls that at work we are canned. beginning in the 90's these spoiled players began talking about the NFL as a "business" rather than a game.....ok then, show up for work and do your damn job. 

"Jay Cutler can throw a football and cut it through the elements as well as anyone out there. Arm talent immense, the upside you love it. The reason I'm critical is I wish I had it"-Trent Dilfer

PapaBear.OR
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Re: George McCaskey's thoughts on the National Anthem debate
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I just came back for the curse words.......

Butkus never wore an earring

IHATETHEBEARS
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Re: George McCaskey's thoughts on the National Anthem debate
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Such a volatile issue...

Personally, I would never kneel during our National Anthem. To me it's a matter of honor. However... I don't find it disrespectful to kneel. To me that's a choice and personal opinion for each individual. One can make an argument that our forefathers and soldiers fought for our right to choose whether or not we want to stand. And it's a legitimate argument. We have rights and choices in this great country - choices that people in some other countries don't have. I want to live in a place where we have those choices. And I am grateful for all those who fought for our rights.

PapaBear.OR
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Re: George McCaskey's thoughts on the National Anthem debate
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IHATETHEBEARS wrote:

Such a volatile issue...

...................... To me that's a choice and personal opinion for each individual. One can make an argument that our forefathers and soldiers fought for our right to choose .......... And it's a legitimate argument.

Absolutley agree and even though I do find it disrespectful, the right to choose is the sticking point.

Butkus never wore an earring

me654
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Re: George McCaskey's thoughts on the National Anthem debate
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It pisses me off and always will. Its disrespectful and does nothing more than further divide even though they say its to create "good conversation and unit". Its also 100% something that started because some asshole lost their job because he sucked at his job and it went from there and now hes wealthy for an initially fake cause. I also agree its their right and to each their own....

but.....

Its also the right of the "business" owner to punish or do as they see fit in resolving the childish distraction. 

"Jay Cutler can throw a football and cut it through the elements as well as anyone out there. Arm talent immense, the upside you love it. The reason I'm critical is I wish I had it"-Trent Dilfer

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