1/28/16 Paid-for Patriotism


Soon the NFL season will come to a close.  From this point on the NFL, other major sports leagues and the Pentagon should end paid-for patriotism.

Paid-for patriotism is the practice of the Pentagon paying for game-day related military events. These have included everything from surprise homecomings, unfurling giant flags and troops singing the national anthem.

It was impressive that professional sports teams were honoring our servicemen and women.  However, the story broke last year that the Defense Department and National Guard were paying millions for those phony displays of patriotism.

I’m holding the sales agreements of the 340,000-dollars the National Guard paid just one NFL team in just one year.

Let’s be reasonable.  Major sporting events attract the attention of young adults.  This is the target audience for military recruiting efforts.  Commercial advertising, recruiting displays and brochure distribution are legitimate activities.

But let’s end the paid-for, staged event of a family getting surprised by a loved-one returning home unexpectedly.  Or a military honor guard carrying the American flag before the game.

Some teams are doing this because the government check cleared and not because of genuine support of the military.

There’s nothing to suggest the practice is illegal.  It’s just insincere, phony, and insulting to those who’ve served.

You can follow Behind the Headlines on Twitter at @BehindTheHead.
You can follow Mark on
Twitter at @MarkHyman.
Join us on our
Facebook page.