The internet noticed what’s wrong with the NFL’s anti-racism Super Bowl ad

What: The backlash to an “inspirational” ad that aired throughout the Super Bowl.

Who: The NFL, Twitter customers.

Why we care: “Soccer is a microcosm of America,” a narrator informs viewers in the first line of a slickly produced NFL ad about equality.


In fact, this line is by accident a bit extra truthful than its creators meant.

Along with the ostensible concept that the sport represents multiculturalism, soccer can also be a microcosm of America in that it was equally hostile to Black Lives Matter earlier than that motion achieved one thing of a vital mass.

Lengthy earlier than Nike determined to place Colin Kaepernick in a 2018 ad, the quarterback’s ongoing silent protest of police brutality in opposition to Black individuals bought him faraway from the NFL. Years later, his signature kneeling turned a broadly in style protest gesture among football players and George Floyd protesters alike.

Contemplating how shortly historical past validated the former 49er’s bravery and integrity, it appears shameful that the NFL has by no means made amends with Kaepernick in any official capability. The group might have introduced that it’s “committing $250 million to assist finish systemic racism,” because it does in its Super Bowl ad, by dedicating the cash to Kap.

As an alternative, the “Encourage Change” ad leaves the activist out totally, as if he weren’t the first individual most individuals consider once they consider antiracism in an NFL context.

This obtrusive absence didn’t go unnoticed.

If the NFL’s remedy of Kaepernick to date makes it too troublesome to function him throughout a minute-long ad about the league’s stance in opposition to systemic racism, that omission reveals extra about the league’s stance in opposition to systemic racism than an ad ever might.


The resolution isn’t no extra adverts about antiracism; it’s cleansing up the NFL’s own residence discipline earlier than airing them.