Scab Boycott

Anyone with a basic interest in American Football has been made fully aware of the NFL’s use of scab refs this season. The term “scab” can be offensive with certain context and tone, but I find the term rather apt given the situation. Rather than address the actual problems with the NFL Referee Association, the league has opted to undermine the negotiating process by using temporary and ugly replacements, scabs.

The problem goes beyond labor verses league. This past month has been a display of countless blown calls (some egregiously) and many more unneeded delays. Fans see it. Players see it. Coaches see it. The very nature of the game is being impacted by substandard referees to the point where the whole season is becoming warped. Worse off, the NFL appears afraid to hold these replacements accountable for their blown calls, perhaps for fear of losing negotiation strength. In either case, the combination of no job security and no accountability inevitably creates an environment where replacements are incentivized to profit in the short term either by gambling or bribery.

With the NFL unwilling to address the issue, fans are left with one option: boycott. Boycotting the NFL is tricky. Most networks are already contracted to pay the NFL so boycotting televised and radio games would be largely ineffective. Many tickets are also similarly paid for. I suspect the most effective way to boycott the National Football League is to suspend doing business with anything that currently generates them revenue. This means not going to their website, canceling the NFL Network and other NFL related subscriptions, and perhaps most impactful, cease purchasing anything licensed by the NFL. That means no video games, jerseys, caps, flags, decals, rugs, and anything else flaunting team, conference, and/or league logos.

Effective today, I am boycotting the NFL.