A daily roundup of the biggest stories in right-wing media.
The NFL anthem controversy continued to roil conservative media on Friday. Multiple outlets carried news of a Morning Consult poll showing a drop in the NFL’s popularity. According to the poll, net favorability for the NFL has dropped from 30 percent last week to 17 percent Thursday. “Dropping from 30 percent to only 17 percent in a week is a massive red flag for NFL management,” the Daily Caller’s David Hookstead wrote. “Any smart businessman can look at those numbers and realize the league is now in full crisis mode. The longer these protests go on the worse things are going get for the NFL, unless something changes.”
“Among Trump voters, the drop is even steeper,” the Federalist’s Madeline Orr noted. “Before players began kneeling during the national anthem last weekend and Trump tweeted at NFL owners, 11 percent of Trump voters said they had a very unfavorable view of the NFL. Now, that number has surged to 33 percent.”
Townhall’s Matt Vespa questioned the wisdom of the NFL players’ approach:
If you’re passionate about race inequality, police brutality, Black Lives Matter, or whatever—your cause will be forgotten the instant you’re seen as being unpatriotic. These guys could have waited until after the game to say what was on their mind through press conferences, interviews, social media, their agents etc., instead they decided to pull this stunt and forever throw whatever cause they’re passionate about into the trash. No one cares when you bash America.
LifeZette catalogued counterprotests against the NFL by fans including jersey burnings, the boycotting of games by bars around the country, and Tennessee businessman Allan Jones pulling his commercials from NFL broadcasts. Jones was a guest on Fox Business’ Varney & Co. “I’m a patriot first and this is about the flag,” he said. This is about the country. It’s not about anything racial. We stand together for our country, black and white, and we stand for the flag.”
The Washington Times ran a post about former NFL running back Herschel Walker’s support of a ban on kneeling, and the Daily Caller ran a post about Green Bay Packers fans opposed to locking arms during the anthem:
“I’ve been through two wars. I’ve seen a lot, lost a lot of friends, and that flag is actually something,” a Packers fan and veteran said. “I’m a disabled vet, actually. I took three shots for this country. I still stand for the flag.”
“I kneel for the Lord, and I stand for the flag,” another asserted.
Another Packers fan said that when she saw some players kneeling, it “really disappointed” her.
One season ticket holder said he would even give up his tickets if the entire team were to kneel, and another said he bought the tickets to watch the team play football, not protest.
Multiple outlets ran posts about an elementary school librarian in Massachussetts who had rejected a gift of 10 Dr. Seuss books to her school from Melania Trump given as part of a National Read a Book Day. In an open letter to Trump, the librarian, Liz Soeiro thanked her for the books while arguing that they should have gone to more underprivileged schools and criticizing both the policies of Betsy DeVos and the racial stereotypes of Dr. Seuss. The first lady’s office called Soeiro’s letter “unfortunate” in a statement. “She berated the beloved author’s illustrations and artistic renderings,” a post at LifeZette read, “and even suggested the first lady should accept Soeiro’s included list of diverse picture books instead. Interestingly, despite the librarian’s objection to Seuss as a ‘racist’ author, Cambridgeport’s library includes 19 Seuss titles. Among them are several the first lady included in her gift. This library’s collection contains two copies, for example, of ‘Oh, the Places You’ll Go!’”
“This isn’t the first time Phipps Soeiro has fired shots at Melania,” the Federalist’s Bre Payton noted. “In 2016, the same Twitter account she operates tweeted shade at Melania in September, 2016 over the speech she delivered at the Republican National Committee, which was very similar to Michelle Obama’s speech in 2008.” LifeZette, the Federalist, and others noted that Soeiro had previously appeared in a tweet wearing a Cat in the Hat outfit. “It turns out that this liberal miscreant only think Dr. Seuss is racist because First Lady Melania Trump was involved,” the Gateway Pundit’s Cristina Laila wrote. “Soeiro was pictured in a ‘Cat in the Hat’ outfit just a couple years ago with a huge smile on her face. Typical liberal–hypocritical and full of hate.”