I am, at best, a casual football fan. Living in Wisconsin, it's inevitable that one is drawn into the Packer frenzy, to some extent. Grocery stores are packed to the gills until twenty minutes before kickoff. The best time to do Christmas shopping is during a game - though good luck on finding a clerk to check you out. There are plenty of choices in new casual wear in the stores, provided you don't mind wearing green and gold, generally with a player number (well, some years there is the red and white for the Badgers, but that's not nearly as enduring as the green and gold). Even baked goods bleed the team colors.
Even a casual fan can't escape the furor over the various "protest" that overpaid, overgrown athletes are staging during the national anthem prior to their events. But like so many "protests", they've not thought through the ramifications.
The attention is no longer on the actual issue for which they are protesting, but on the protests themselves.
Even the athletes themselves seem to have lost the focus of what they are protesting, as this bit of a ramble from Packer's quarterback Aaron Rodgers points out:
“This is about equality,” Rodgers said. “This is about unity and love and growing together as a society, and starting a conversation around something that may be a little bit uncomfortable for people. But we’ve got to come together and talk about these things and grow as a community, as a connected group of individuals in our society, and we’re going to continue to show love and unity.
“And this week we’re going to ask the fans to join in as well and come together and show people that we can be connected and we can grow together.”
Well, no: the original reason Colin Kapernick took a knee was to protest perceived police violence targeted at black men. Note that Rodgers never mentions the central issue by name - racism - but goes on about "unity". The core of the protest is about anything but unity.
Bah. It's to the point where the only way to watch any part of a game is to watch it with the sound off, and to stay away from all media between games.
The better plan? Spend those three and a half hours reading a good book.