In a fit of despair, I deleted my Twitter account. I'm in the process of getting it restored, but it may take some time. I must admit that I'd had it, thinking that my puny presence on Twitter and limited blog presence was having no impact on the swirl of events that defines the Obama administration, events that seem to diminish our liberty with each passing day.
What sent me over the edge was the whole Rush Limbaugh/NFL fiasco. What hit so close to home was the fact that Jimmy Irsay, the owner of the Indianapolis Colts, took it upon himself to disparage Rush and state his opposition to allowing Rush to "join the club". I have been a fan of the Indianapolis Colts since they first moved to Indianapolis. I had moved to Indianapolis in December of 2003 to begin a job with American Fletcher National Bank as a commercial loan officer. Our offices were located on Monument Circle and it was a fairly short walk to the old Hoosier Dome, where the Colts were introduced to the city in January of 2004, after their infamous move from Baltimore.
My co-workers and I went to the Hoosier Dome when the Colts were introduced that day in 2004 and the city was in a state of euphoria over their new team. Although I did not opt for season tickets, seats were not hard to come by. I attended numerous games and the highlight game of my time in Indianapolis was the game played on Monday night, October 31, 1988. This was the very first time that the "Indianapolis" Colts had been featured on Monday Night Football and the place was rocking! Eric Dickerson ran wild and the Colts beat the Denver Broncos and John Elway. It was a blast to be there and a cherished memory.
Fast-forward almost twenty years and I find myself in the Dallas area. I moved here in 1995 to pursue a job with GTE, which ended up turning into Verizon while I was there. My love of the Colts didn't die. I would cajole the local sports bar to carry the game on Sundays, because the Colts just didn't command a regular place on national TV. That all changed when Peyton Manning was drafted as the quarterback. Needless to say, the Colts have had a phenomenal run while in Peyton's hands and I have followed them every step of the way. Until this year.
Although I became a subscriber to the NFL Sunday Ticket on DirecTV several years ago (to watch ALL the Colts games), my time spent watching the Colts is now diminished. The owner decided to disparage Rush Limbaugh and by doing so has disparaged me and my political views. It was in Indianapolis that I first started listening to Rush and I think it was in 1988, when his program was syndicated and went national. It may have been around the same time that I attended the Colts' Monday night game.
I sent Jimmy Irsay an email and told him that I was a Colts' fan no longer. In berating Rush, he also berated me. After the initial shock of reading his words, I realized that I was a pawn as a fan. A marketing target and hopeful contributor to all-things NFL. I have a collection of Colts hats and numerous paraphernalia about the Colts to suggest that I have contributed hard-earned dollars to the NFL cause. No longer.
My subscription to the NFL Sunday Ticket has been bought and paid for this year. It will be the last. I opted out of two online NFL pools, even though I was leading both by substantial margins. Not another nickel will go to the coffers of the NFL! Nor will I support or promote any website that caters to them. I AM DONE!
What really set me off was the cover to Parade Magazine last Sunday. On the cover was Roger Goodall, the current commissioner of the NFL. The article praised his efforts to minimize the effects of negative publicity resulting from player misconduct. What wasn't said in the article was his own opposition to Rush Limbaugh's bid as a partial owner of the St. Louis Rams. Goodall sided with Jimmy Irsay in opposing a citizen's right to invest in something they were passionate about.
Well, I'm pretty passionate about my love of this country and all the things we have stood for over the years. I will not support the NFL if they are telling me that my beliefs disqualify me from being a "true fan".
I have crossed the Rubicon
Update, February 22, 2010:
True to my word, I have officially canceled my DirecTV service. As of last Friday, I am now a customer of Verizon Fios TV. It took me the better part of Saturday to completely re-connect everything to my satisfaction (Thank you Radio Shack), but it is done.