As the sports scene is flooded with battles that mix politics and competitive sport, many athletes have taken sides. Some believe that President Trump shouldn't be able to dictate what issues get protested and others believe these athletes are picking the wrong place and time to take a stand. It's only a matter of time, as the NBA, MLB, NFL, and NHL are knee-deep in the debate, that wrestling makes its way into the conversation.
Those fans waiting for that shoe to drop should remember one thing. If professional wrestling does become another platform for protests, it won't be because a wrestler or talent knelt during a national anthem. Unlike other forms of entertainment, the performers in WWE are not present as the anthem is sung. Therefore, the opportunity to use the anthem as a way to send a message doesn't exist. But, one former WWE Superstar believes there's an even bigger reason you won't see WWE Superstars among the vocal group of people slamming Trump and protesting his agenda.
Austin Aries was recently on On an episode of The Tomorrow Show. During that interview, Aries discussed the lack of options for WWE performers and explained, "... in the NFL right now, if you take a stand and if your owner doesn't like it, you've got 30 other teams you can go play for... In our situation, it's a little different because you don't have those luxuries, so more guys might toe the line there for fear of not having a job."
In some respects, Aries is right. Wrestlers don't have multiple job opportunities outside of the WWE (at least not ones that pay terribly well). You can try your luck on the independent scene or travel internationally to Japan, but in the big time, it's WWE and very little else.
But, Aries believes, in general, WWE Superstars and other athletes should potentially find a way to voice their opinions and join the many who have fought back against Trump.
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Aries said, "It'd be nice if we did [protest]. It'd be nice across the board because I think people are missing the point of what this is about....these soldiers have gone and put their lives on the line so these guys have the right to do this."
Aries won't likely be the first wrestler to weigh in on this subject, but because he's no longer part of the WWE, he has nothing to lose or gain by being vocal. It will be interesting to see who else joins him.