It is easy to do the right thing when the public supports it, or when it is economically advantageous to do so, but it is difficult when the consequences of your actions go against your immediate interests.

A few years ago, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell made many poor decisions when Colin Kaepernick kneeled for the National Anthem to protest police brutality against black people.

He went through great lengths to silence the San Francisco quarterback, and it is likely he influenced other NFL owners to keep him out of the league.

Since then, the political environment has changed, which has now compelled Goodell to eat his words:

"We, the National Football League, admit we were wrong for not listening to NFL players earlier and encourage all players to speak out and peacefully protest. We, the National Football League, believe that black lives matter."

Let me be clear: Goodell is no civil rights hero. He is an investment-driven plutocrat who will do anything to increase his own net worth. He gets no credit for saying the right thing when it was easy to do so.

Actions speak louder than words, and if he means what he says he does, then he must completely change the NFL’s culture from the top, down.

He can start by offering a public apology to Kaepernick and providing full compensation for the time that he lost as a player.

Brian D. King, Tahlequah

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