Alright, this epically dumb news story is cleared for takeoff.
Here's the dumb, dumb deal: Members of the Brainerd Lakes Regional Airport Commission want everyone to know they DO NOT approve of NFL players kneeling during the national anthem to protest police brutality and racial inequality.
During a dumb October 5 meeting to plan for a dumb hypothetical -- the idea that tiny regional airports might be needed should weather impact air travel into Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport during Super Bowl 52 -- a dumb plan was hatched.
Commission member Jeff Czeczok filed a motion to "protest" potential flights into Brainerd, the Duluth News Tribune reports, until the NFL enforces its rule requiring players to stand for the national anthem.
God that's dumb.
So dumb, in fact, that it failed to attract a second motion, though almost every commission member dumbly voiced support of Czeczok's stance.
"As long as the film crews and the media keep spotlighting the fact that this guy didn't stand and this guy didn't stand, they're going to keep doing it," commission member Marty Johnson said, adding that the NFL is losing sponsors because of the protests. "The media is the problem."
Czeczok, in a heroic act of bullshittery, pointed to Brainerd's connections with World War II's Bataan Death March, therefore apple pie, Betsy Ross, bald eagle, Bob Hope.
"I just would like to remind the people sitting at this table that, you know, we have a national organization that has team members kneeling down during our national anthem," Czeczok said, exhibiting more self-control than President Donald Trump, who called those very players sons of bitches last month.
Let's unpack all this dumbness.
-- First, there's nothing in the NFL rule book concerning players standing for the anthem (the game-day operations manual includes some language), and the the league has stated that it won't discipline players who kneel or stay in locker rooms during it.
-- Second, only a couple advertisers have ditched the NFL due to the anthem protests, most of them local, NJ.com reports.
-- Third, you wanna protest these imaginary, never-gonna-happen flights diverted from MSP? What would that even look like? You're gonna ... turn away planes? Buh?
-- Fourth, flag ≠ unyielding love and respect for THE TROOPS. The logical fallacy that peacefully protesting a symbolic piece of fabric amounts to being anti-military or anti-American is mind-boggling.
-- Finally, there's roughly a zero percent chance anyone visiting Minneapolis for the Super Bowl on February 4 comes within 100 miles of the Brainerd Lakes Regional Airport, which is located about two hours north of the Twin Cities. It'll be a hard enough sell for Minneapolis to shake any ice-glazed, podunk stigmas.
Commission chair Don Jacobson and commission members Johnson, Paul Thiede, and Trudi Amundson all sympathized with Czeczok's very dumb position, in principle. Commission member Kevin Stunek, to his un-dumb credit, did not comment on the motion.
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