Lousiana State Rep. Kenny Havard said Monday that he wants millions of state dollars to be cut from the New Orleans Saints after they refused to participate in the National Anthem on Sunday, according to The Advocate.
“The very reason (the Saints) have the privilege and opportunity to play professional football while being paid millions is because someone in uniform died protecting their right to do so,” Havard said.
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“Disrespecting our national anthem and flag in the name of social injustice is the highest form of hypocrisy,” Havard said. “Our free society made possible by our fighting men and women has made available free education, free lunch, housing and free healthcare and is now be considered socially unjust,” Havard said. “It is time the taxpayers quit subsidizing protest on big boy playgrounds. I believe in the right to protest but, not at a taxpayer subsidized sporting event. Do it on your own time. There are plenty of disabled children, elderly and veterans in this state that would appreciate the money.”
A 2015 Forbes story reported that Tom Benson, who owns the New Orleans Saints and Pelicans, was projected to benefit more than $392 million from state subsidies through 2025.
The report said during the Mercedes-Benz Superdome lease “the state will pay Benson at least $198 million in increased revenue from the Superdome, $142 million in rental payments on property Benson owns, $10 million in bonuses for bringing the Super Bowl to New Orleans and $2.6 million in tax breaks. Benson will get another $40 million from private rent payments to a tower he bought as part of the deal.”
2025 marks the end of the lease.