the NFL “Locke” out: would Locke approve?
To all those sports fans who have been in a coma the last few weeks, believe me when I say I am here with you. It’s as if a black cloud has found its way directly above the heads of any self-respecting sports fanatic. March 11 was a sad day for all of us, Sundays seemed to officially assert themselves as the worst day of the week. Football is way to cope with knowing that you are one day away from going back to work, or in our case, class. Now there is a possible absence of America’s greatest form of ecstasy…football.
Now the question comes, would John Locke approve of the current NFL lockout? I believe he wouldn’t. Locke rooted his theories in the thought that each of us has a right to life, liberty and most of all property. He felt that it was the governments purpose to assure protection and preservation of the property. Most of all, he felt a contract was a binding source of trust that must not be broken, instead upheld.
In the case of the NFL lockout, the collective bargaining agreement between the NFL and the NFLPA (Player’s Association) has expired. Despite weeks of so-called “negotiating,” all that was left was billionaires pointing fingers at millionaires. Despite associates from both sides claiming possible deals to have been in place, the sole issue was money, there is now way around it, no ifs ands or buts. Here is my issue, Locke wouldn’t approve of the NFL not allowing players (whom I might add are under contract with there respective teams) to participate in the upcoming season. He believed that a contract, especially in this case dealing with property and the right to play, should not be broken. Since the NFLPA has decertified, players can no longer participate in any activities related to the team whom they are under contract with. If there in fact was no NFL season in 2011, each city with a team would have to pay $160 million in order to make up for lost revenue. I think Locke would see the lockout in general as team owners and representatives infringing upon and taking away the rights of their players whom they have under contract to play. One of the reason’s that the NFLPA was skeptical of giving more money to the owners was because they felt they were in need of money to pay off debt’s from sponsors and other business representations. Locke would see this as money that could and most likely should be going to the player’s, but instead is being taken away from them in order to benefit the owner’s own credit.
This brings us to another point as to whether or not Locke would see owners tyrants. Considering that he could very well see them as violating player’s rights, I think that Locke would agree that owners were acting as a tyranny. Not only are they attempting to take away the player’s right to play, but they are also violating a contract between the two parties. Lock would also see them as acting solely for selfish benefits in terms of asking for more money to pay off debts or even to invest in new corporations. Although it could possibly be a beneficial business endeavor, it would not be helping both parties in the contract, rather only one.
Locke was one who saw contracts as a defining agreement between parties, one that should never be broken unless mutual. With the NFl lockout, not only do we see a breach of contracts, but we see rights of players being taken away because of what seems to be owners and other representatives of the NFL asking for more money without proper cause or reasoning. I think Locke would be wholeheartedly against the lockout, it has now been sent to court where players are suing owners in anti-trust lawsuits. Locke saw the main purpose of government as one to preserve property of the people and ensure that rights were not taken away, especially when a contract has been agreed upon. If the government and congress does in fact have to intervene because an agreement can’t be reached in court, I think you know who Locke would side with. He would stand for the preservation of rights and above all else, to restore football to the homes of every American who seems to have lost hope for a pastime that can’t be replaced.