Stephen Ross, the rich guy who owns the Dolphins, told the New York Daily News last night that “all of our players will be standing” for the national anthem next season. Various Dolphins players including Arian Foster, Kenny Stills, and Michael Thomas have kneeled to protest police brutality during the national anthem since 2016, and Ross’s organization has responded by issuing statements about freedom and the troops, as well as creating a new yearly fund aimed at addressing social-justice issues in Miami.
Ross told the Daily News that he used to “totally [support] the players in what they were doing” until the president took aim at player protests. Even though the actual goal of the protests had nothing to do with supporting or not supporting the military, bad-faith misinterpretations of the protests shifted the narrative. If Ross had actual beliefs, he’d care enough not to get suckered into trying to appease everyone, but instead, he said he wants his players to stand because of an astroturfed narrative sold to the public by liars:
“When that message changed, and everybody was interpreting it as that was the reason, then I was against kneeling,” said Ross. “I like Donald. I don’t support everything that he says. Overall, I think he was trying to make a point, and his message became what kneeling was all about. From that standpoint, that is the way the public is interpreting it. So I think that’s really incumbent upon us to adopt that. That’s how, I think, the country now is interpreting the kneeling issue.”
Ironically, Ross said all this at an event thrown by the Jackie Robinson Foundation (of which he’s a board member) as he received a lifetime achievement award for being a “longtime champion of equal opportunity.” Ross must have realized that he said the quiet part loud, as he issued a statement this morning saying he wouldn’t force anyone to stand and that he regretted “that my comments have been misconstrued,” which is characteristically weak as hell.
Ross did not address his reasoning for why he changed his mind on players demonstrating. Anyway, he was also asked about fellow Miami knob Derek Jeter and his purposeful detonation of the Marlins. Here’s what Ross said:
Hopefully he’ll be a great executive. The best way to get a fan base is to win. Winning solves all solutions.
It’s so true.