Saturday, December 7, 2013

An Open Letter To The NFL - Please Stop Attacking Our Rights

Commissioner Roger Goodell
National Football League
280 Park Avenue
New York, NY 10017
NFL League Office Telephone: 1-212-450-2000

Dear Commissioner Goodell, 

I am writing to ask you to reconsider your refusal to carry the ad prepared and submitted by Daniel Defense.  This refusal is definitely NOT IN YOUR BEST INTEREST.  Your policy essentially says that the tens of millions of gun owners in this country are doing something immoral, simply by owning a firearm that might be used in self defense.  The majority of these people, including myself, like football.  One of the primary rules of business is; "Do not insult your customers."  Sadly, this is EXACTLY what you have done.

Here is the ad in question - please tell us what is offensive to you

First of all position rings hollow and hypocritical when your primary advertisers make a product that is involved in far more deaths than firearms.  How many BILLIONS OF DOLLARS do you get from alcohol advertising every year?  How much more money do you take in from alcohol sales at the stadiums?  All of this from a product that kills many more people than firearms.

There are approximately 80,000 deaths attributable to excessive alcohol use each year in the United States. Additionally, there are over 10,000 people killed in drunk driving accidents. Many of these people were completely sober at the time of the accidents.  Just drunk driving accidents alone account for about as many deaths as firearms homicides.   Alcohol is a factor in at least 40% of all violent crimes today.  Furthermore, published studies suggest that as many as 86% of homicide offenders, 37% of assault offenders, 60% of sexual offenders, up to 57% of men and 27% of women involved in marital violence, and 13% of child abusers were drinking at the time of the offense.  TAKEN TOGETHER, THE PRODUCT PUSHED BY YOUR PRIMARY ADVERTISERS IS INVOLVED IN THE DEATH OF 10-15 TIMES AS MANY PEOPLE WHO ARE MURDERED WITH FIREARMS. 

Your response would undoubtedly be: "These deaths are not caused by alcohol, but by people who abuse alcohol."  My answer is: EXACTLY.  Firearms related deaths are not caused by firearms, but by the abuse of firearms.   Yet, you choose to ban ads for one and not the other - clearly there is quite a bit of hypocrisy in your policy.

Yet there is a very important difference: It is hard to imagine a situation in which alcohol saves the life of the user or another person.  In contrast, local media carries stories every day documenting situations in which citizens save lives and/or stop crimes with firearms.  Yet these are but the tip of the iceberg.  Most defensive gun uses do not result in anyone being hurt, shots being fired, or even police being called.  In fact, this peer reviewed study found that firearms are used defensively more than 2 million times per year.

In addition, you have decided to take a stand solidly against people who exercise a fundamental, constitutionally protected right - and in favor of a group that is working to restrict and, if possible, abolish this right.  Think about it:  You are taking a stand AGAINST A CIVIL RIGHT cherished by tens of millions of Americans - many, if not most of whom, are NFL fans.  How smart is that?  How many of these people will decide that they value their rights more than your product?

Make no mistake, there is no question that the NFL has now taken an anti-2nd Amendment and anti-gun rights stand - not when you accept ads from groups that advocate the restriction and abolishing of these rights and refuse ads that present the other side.  Certainly not when you allow sports commentator Bob Costas to spew anti-gun rhetoric during Sunday Night Football.

Additionally, your policy of forbidding off duty police officers from carrying firearms is completely unacceptable to anyone who supports police officers.  It does not matter that politically appointed police chiefs may support it - as someone who worked side by side with cops for years, I absolutely know that the rank and file definitely doesn't.   First of all, many departments REQUIRE THEIR OFFICERS TO BE ARMED 24/7 365.  They can be suspended or even fired if they are caught violating this policy.  Thanks for effective banning these brave men and women from attending games, it shows just how little you value them.  Additionally, cops often carry off duty because criminals have long memories - and friends.  I know cops who would have been killed in off duty confrontations if the criminals knew they were unarmed.  Thanks for telling these officers that they have to risk their lives to attend a game.  I'm not a cop, but this stupid policy - which is motivated solely by the anti-gun rights agenda of some big cities - is yet another reason why many Americans are considering living without the NFL.

Then there is the fact that you very nearly refused a pro-adoption commercial - simply because it was being presented by a conservative Christian group.  It seems that every year you find a way to display your hard left politics.

Commissioner, you can only insult people and oppose what they hold dear so many times before they decide that they no longer want to give you money.  I can only speak for myself, but if you do not reverse your decision is regards to the Daniel Defense ad, I won't be doing anything that gives you revenue.  Additionally, I will inform your advertisers and the TV networks that I won't be watching.  Not only this, I will do everything I can to get others to do the same.

Please reconsider your decision.


Rev. R. Vincent Warde

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