NFL legend Brett Favre weighed in on the increasing politicization of American sports and said that avid fans of sports are not interested in seeing sports mixed up with politics.
The retired football quarterback said political leanings and partisan movements are not welcomed in sports as die-hard sports fans watch sports only for sports, not politics.
“I think both sides, for the most part, want to see it just remain about the sport, not about politics. At least that’s my interpretation. I know when I turn on a game, I want to watch the game. I want to watch the players play and teams win and lose and come from behind,” Favre told Andrew Klaven in a recent interview.
“I want to watch all the important parts of the game, not what’s going on outside the game. I think the general fan feels the same way.”
Brett Favre slams the current trend of politics in sports. https://t.co/q4tGyRPoaw
— OutKick (@Outkick) April 14, 2021
Despite differences in upbringing, race, and other social factors, the legendary Green Bay Packers quarterback said that players were a family — and race issues, among others, were non-issue back then.
“We were in something together. We fought together. We won together. We lost together. And we truly were a family. So yeah, to answer your question we absolutely didn’t have issues,” Favre said when asked whether there were “some kind of tensions” related to race that is evident in sports now.
“I don’t know what issues, if any, in the locker room that they’re facing now other than what I hear, or assumptions,” he said. “So if there are problems within the locker room, you know, that’s too bad.”
Favre maintains that sports unites Americans
Meanwhile, the pro-football star also said that sports used to unite Americans — despite differences in other times — and he insisted that it should stay that way.
“Something’s got to unite us. And the games or sport in the past has been some kind of unification,” Favre said. “Now, it’s almost like a division.”
He went on to say that sports fans started losing interest in sports because of efforts to mix sports with politics.
“I can’t tell you how many people, including yourself, have said to me, ‘I don’t watch anymore. It’s not about the game anymore.’ I tend to agree,” he said.
“Again, it’s a shame. There’s always been differences and issues within the world, within the country, within our states. But something has to unify us. I felt like the flag and standing patriotically — because blacks and white and Hispanics have fought and died for this country. It’s too bad,” Favre went on.
Sports was dragged into the political limelight once more after the Major League Baseball (MLB) decided to move out the All-Star Game from Georgia in opposition to new elections laws passed in the state, which democratically-elected officials said are only meant to make the polls safer.
Favre also lamented how his previous tweet showing his support for former President Donald Trump was considered “controversial” but “players kneeling during the national anthem is supposed to be considered okay.”
“Absolutely, it’s very lopsided and whatever happened to, you know, your ideas, your thoughts, your beliefs being yours and not wrong?” he said. “That seems like a distant past.”
Despite his public support to former President Trump, Favre also clarified false statements that he is “not racist.”
My Vote is for what makes this country great, freedom of speech & religion, 2nd Amnd, hard working tax paying citizens, police & military. In this election, we have freedom of choice, which all should respect. For me & these principles, my Vote is for @RealDonaldTrump. #Vote ☑️🇺🇸
— Brett Favre (@BrettFavre) October 30, 2020
“Those who know him know that he is the furthest thing from a racist. I think I’m a pretty good guy who cares about other people as well,” he said.
“I knew that it was going to create a firestorm by first of all playing golf with the president, which I thought was an honor regardless of who that president is and by tweeting my support for President Trump I knew that would create some more issues,” Favre added.
After moving the games out of Atlanta, because of its new election law, MLB decided to move the annual All-Star Game to Denver.
However, a recent survey found that most Americans think it’s a “bad idea” to mix sports and politics — although most Democrats are supportive of the decision made by MLB.
As sports ratings decline, a separate poll also found at least 34% of Americans watching less sports “over social justice messaging.”
Former Green Bay Packers star Brett Favre is blasting the left-wing path taken by the major sports leagues in the U.S. https://t.co/FeBpm1UiT4
— Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) April 14, 2021
The Yahoo News/YouGov survey said 11% of those asked said they have watched more sports as a result of the political messaging in sports, while 56.3% said they have watched the same amount of sports regardless.
The survey conducted between March 22 to 25 also showed that 19% of Democrats responded that they have watched less sports, while 13.7% said they have watched more. In contrast, 53% of Republicans answered that they have watched less sports due to social justice messaging, with just 8.6% saying they have watched more.
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