A kerfuffle erupted in the last few days over NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell’s decision to deny AMVETS a 30-second commercial spot during the Super Bowl. In case, like me, you weren’t familiar with the organization here is a brief from their website:
AMVETS, which is also known as American Veterans, is the most inclusive Congressionally-chartered veterans service organization open to representing the interests of 20 million veterans and their families. We are veterans serving veterans since 1944.
As John wrote about earlier, Goodell denied the request for commercial space because he claims it would bring politics into Super Bowl commercials and that’s a no-no. That’s right. The man who has allowed pampered professional athletes to protest American law enforcement and President Trump during the National Anthem all season long now does not wish for a veterans group to make a statement.
“It’s not an indication of any lack of support,” Goodell told media after being questioned about the AMVETS ad. “We have a VFW ad that talks about, celebrates the important work that our veterans are doing, and of course you all know we’re going to have 15 Medal of Honor winners that we’re bringing together at the Super Bowl, which I think is the largest number of Medal of Honor winners ever brought together at any event other than their annual national gathering.”
Sure, Commissioner Goodell, you’ve done enough for veterans. Roll with that. How about all the money that has gone to NFL team coffers paid for by the Pentagon to do military fly-overs, flag displays the length of the football field, etc. all in the name of support the military and help recruiting efforts? The VFW ad asks that everyone stand for veterans while the AMVETS ad simply says, “Please Stand”. Of all the things that a political message could say, this one seems laughably tame. I wrote of my disgust with the NFL players and offensive political statements when my Texans decided to participate.
There is some good news to this story. AMVETS has found a way for the public to view their message. There’s an app for that.
During the #SuperBowl half-time, the #SuperSquares app will feature our 30-second commercial asking Americans across our great nation to #PleaseStand. Watch & interact with questions after the commercial 📱 https://t.co/Zh2HxvjD1q
— AMVETS (@AMVETSHQ) February 3, 2018
Now for a twist. Enter Steve Eimers, a grieving father in Tennessee with a different political message. He purchased a 30 second PSA in the West Palm Beach market in hopes that President Trump watches the Super Bowl while at Mar-A-Lago this weekend. He wants to get the attention of the president about the tragic story of losing his 17-year-old daughter when her automobile crashed into a guardrail. Trump mentioned guardrail safety concerns during the roll-out of his infrastructure legislation proposal. Several states are dealing with lawsuits about defective guardrails. Eimers claims the guardrails in Tennessee are defective and the state is acting since Hannah’s death to remove and replace them. However, Eimers says that the National Highway Administration is moving too slowly. In January, Trump spoke about the need for stringent restrictions on the X-Lite guardrails. So, Eimers did the PSA to get his message to the president. The $1,000.00 price tag for the PSA is considerably more cost-efficient than the price of a Super Bowl ad, if the president does, in fact, see it.
— CBS News (@CBSNews) February 4, 2018