Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Football Pacifists Want NFL Draft Abolished In Favor Of Volunteer Service

New York, NY. (Apr. 23) - National Football League headquarters were protested against this morning, as a well-organized group of football pacifists decried the tradition-rich draft as unconstitutional, calling for the league to adopt a volunteer-based method of replenishing its talent.

"Hell no, they shouldn't go!," chanted the protesters -- mainly made up of long-haired, hippy freaks who burned footballs. Some protesters simply sat, Indian-style, on the sidewalk outside the league offices, wearing football helmets with the word "draft" in a circle with a line through it.

"Football is a GAME, not a war", one picket sign read.

"The draft leaves me cold," read another.

Jonathan Pierce, 47, one of the protest's organizers, said the NFL doesn't need a draft at this time.

"The league is at peace," Pierce said. "The draft is unnecessary. I'm sure there are plenty of strong, fast, athletic young men who would gladly volunteer for NFL service, if they were targeted in a marketing campaign. We see no need for our boys to be torn from their families and thrust into a world of violence and possible career-ending knee injuries. And all for what? The almighty dollar?"

Anti-NFL Draft protesters outside league headquarters this morning

Pierce was among a group of organizers who led a march from the NFL combines in Indianapolis that began in early March. The combines are an annual event that showcases the best young talent emerging from the nation's universities.

"If you could have looked at these kids' faces," Pierce said sadly. "They all had that scared look of doom. These young men knew they were soon to be forcibly entered into a life of million-dollar salaries and endorsement deals. And only a few had agents. The looks I saw ... they were petrified at what a life of embarrassing riches and guaranteed contracts might bring."

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello would only say, in a statement, "While we respect this country's right to free speech, the Draft will nonetheless take place this weekend, as planned."

Pierce said he hopes to gather enough signatures -- approximately eight million -- to place the issue of whether there should be an NFL Draft on the general election ballot this November. According to law, Pierce has until a week from Friday to gather the signatures. He said he has "about 400" so far.

"But nothing worth fighting for is ever easy," Pierce said.

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