Over the weekend, members of the ECU marching band took a knee while playing the national anthem, joining in the growing national protest to end social injustice and systemic racism in the country. After their protest, the band was booed and heckled while coming back onto the field for the halftime performance.
Since then, ECU officials have released a statement saying protests from the marching band will “no longer be tolerated,” but some local radio stations are going a bit further.
On Tuesday,Colonial Media Chairman and CEO Jeff Andrulonis announced ESPN Fayetteville and WFAY 100.1 FM will not air ECU’s game against South Florida because, well, they are protesting the band’s initial protest.
In a mess of a statement playing the political pro-patriotism trumpet, Andrulonis gauchely explained the stations’ decision not to air the game, saying the stations will play the remainder of ECU’s football games after “taking a knee” this weekend.
This is something else – ESPN Fayetteville radio won't carry ECU-USF because of the band protest pic.twitter.com/2UwHgkfZBZ
— Mark Armstrong (@ArmstrongABC11) October 4, 2016
More power to you, Jeff, it’s your right to be tone deaf.
But silencing college kids from speaking out on issues they are passionate against seems counterproductive. And it’s incredibly contradictory to say, we respect your First Amendment right but we are boycotting you because of you expressing your First Amendment right.”
Oh, and how about that snide “get an education” remark?
Don’t kids go to school to free their minds and learn to think for themselves? If anyone should “get an education,” it’s probably the folks attempting to limit opportunities for Americans to express their First Amendment right.
Photo Credit: Deadspin