(National Sentinel) Sports Activism: To hear TV executives tell it, the reason why opening weekend for the NFL drew far fewer viewers than in previous years was because of the weather.

Yes, according to Bloomberg News, Hurricanes Harvey and Irma was so interesting that they caused a double-digit drop in opening weekend viewership:

Cable news and the Weather Channel almost tripled their audiences in prime time and grew fourfold during the day, according to data from the networks, drawing fans away from football. “Thursday Night Football” was down 13 percent, and Sunday games on Foxand CBS also declined. “Sunday Night Football” on Comcast Corp.’s NBC, featuring the arch-rival New York Giants and Dallas Cowboys, was a rare bright spot.

A drop in viewing last year caused consternation at league offices and the major media companies that count on the NFL to deliver the biggest audiences on TV. Executives blamed several factors, led by interest in the presidential election and a poor slate of games.

Poor matchups and the weather. These guys sound like climate change hoaxers.

While no doubt the hurricanes dampened viewership, there’s a big, fat, 1,000-pound elephant in the room that nobody is mentioning: Protests of the National Anthem are really driving fans away from the game.

“I think if you look at some of the reasons why NFL viewership was down last year, that is a reason that’s mentioned by a fair amount of viewers. It is something they don’t find attractive or they find don’t compelling in coverage of the football game,” CBS Sports executive Sean McManus said before this season’s kickoff.

The downward trend began last year after then-San Francisco 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick not only began kneeling during the Anthem “in protest” of alleged widespread police brutality against minorities, he took it a step further by actively insulting police officers, most famously by wearing socks to practice featuring pigs with police caps — and at a time when police officers were being targeted by supporters of Black Lives Matter.

It is continuing this season, as NFL players have already begun similar protests either by not standing for the anthem and placing their hand over their heart or by kneeling. And of course, the Left-leaning legacy media networks make sure to cover those protests because like some of the NFL players, they, too, have a misguided and incorrect generalized opinion about their own country.

Not all NFL players are guilty, of course. After a few weeks of controversy, the entire Cleveland Browns squad ran out of the team tunnel onto their home field with members of local police and the military, then stood respectfully with them during the anthem.

It’s a free country and Americans are free to express themselves in any way they choose that’s legal and doesn’t harm other people. But frankly, it makes no sense, financially speaking, to disrespect the majority of your fans by choosing to publicly disrespect the country in which you live, and in which you make a fantastic living playing a game.

More than that, the legacy media is once again being intentionally dishonest by failing to report the complete truth about why NFL viewership is really down — and why it will continue to fall if the protests continue.

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