When the New York Jets pitched a partnership with the Blue Lives Matter activist group this week, the group reportedly rejected the offer within minutes, citing the NFL’s history of both anti-cop and anti-American actions and rhetoric.
“Although I’d love to work with an NFL team right now I feel it is not the right time. All over the United States players feel entitled to disrespect our first responders, our military members both past and present and our flag,” the group’s founder, Joe Imperatrice, wrote in emails shared with the New York Post.
“These players make more money in a season than some people make in a lifetime and their ‘Issues’ are made up, exaggerated, and more times than not false.”
Speaking Saturday evening with Fox News host Neil Cavuto, Imperatrice expounded further on why his unabashedly pro-police group has zero interest in working with cop haters.
“There was a detective, Joseph Lemm, that went overseas and was killed in action. When he came back, one of the most poignant things ever was his son on the shoulders of his partner saluting the casket. And what was on that casket? The flag. That’s why we stand. We’re gonna stand because Joe can’t anymore,” he said.
But it’s not that Imperatrice isn’t interested in ever working with the Jets and other NFL teams toward promoting community initiatives like after-school programs. It’s rather that he first expects to see the NFL hold its players accountable. That hasn’t happened thus far.
“An issue I have is when you sign a player like Isaiah Crowell,” he continued, referencing the Jets’ running back, who reportedly posted an image to social media in 2016 that depicted a masked figure slashing the throat of a cop.
“I’m not discrediting that he didn’t take it down and apologize the very next day, and I’m not discrediting that he didn’t give $35,000 to a police fund after the five Dallas officers were shot and killed, but you know what he was able to do? He was able to erase the comments he made.”
He added that the family members of deceased officers like Lemm don’t have the option to erase what happened to them. And this is exactly why players like Crowell need to be held accountable before Imperatrice will work for their employers.
“They’re condoning this,” Imperatrice continued, pointing to examples such as Jets co-owner Christopher Johnson announcing in May that if any of his players kneel, he’ll pay for potential fines out of his own pockets.
“We have to stop. These players make millions of dollars to play within white lines on American soil and get paid with American dollars. If they don’t like this, and they can’t do this and look at the greater good, they can go elsewhere.”
Perhaps North Korea or Iran.