The student news site of Potomac Falls High School

The Roar

The student news site of Potomac Falls High School

The Roar

The student news site of Potomac Falls High School

The Roar

“I Don’t Care — Let Me Watch The Super Bowl.”


“The Super Bowl Massacre” and American Culture as a weapon of mass distraction. Opinion by Mohsin Ali.

This past Sunday, Americans around the nation gathered with family and friends, tuning into the NFL’s most viewed football event of the year, The Super Bowl. The noises of their televisions drowning out the cries for help across the globe. During the big game and the buzz surrounding it, the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) took advantage of the 4-hour window and launched a full scale offensive on the 1.4 million refugees present in the rural farmlands of Rafah, killing 95, including 42 children. (Al-Jazeera) 

Netizens were quick to label this as “The Super Bowl Massacre” and were critical of the events that unfolded on Sunday across social media, primarily TikTok and X (formerly Twitter). Users on X criticized the blatant disregard for the ongoing genocide and claimed that American individualism and the consumerist culture acts as a distraction for the masses and allows the US and its allies to engage in imperialist practices abroad. With American culture being one of the United States’ major exports, its impact on the global stage needs to be considered, especially during conflicts. 

Some counter-arguments about the disrelation of sports and politics also erupted, however statements published by the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers on Instagram were brought to light. 

“The Kansas City Chiefs denounce the recent senseless acts of terrorism and mourn the loss of innocent lives in Israel. We pray for the families impacted by this horrific and unconscionable violence”  [@Chiefs via Instagram]

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“The San Francisco 49ers stand with the people of Israel and mourn the senseless loss of life at the hands of terrorists. We strongly condemn all acts of terrorism and pray for peace for the entire region.” [@49ers via Instagram] 

The statements, published by the teams on Oct 10 and Oct 9 respectively, were called out for their hypocrisy. The vague statements in support of the state of Israel, although well-intentioned at first sight, were heavily discussed as being hypocritical statements that ignore the plight of the Palestinians. With 28,000 dead and 2 million displaced (Gaza Health Ministry) in what is internationally recognized as a genocide (International Court of Justice), the teams failed to show solidarity with the Palestinians, and instead showed their alignment with the Palestinian peoples’ aggressors. With many other teams and companies issuing similar statements, the overwhelming majority accused these establishments of racism, showing sympathy for white victims, while entirely ignoring the cries of brown victims suffering tenfold. 

An uproar was created after Israel premiered an ad during the Super Bowl paying $7 Million dollars. The advertisement denounced antisemitism and advocated to #BringAllDadsHome in reference to the Israeli civilians taken hostage by resistance group Hamas, following the Oct 7 attacks. 

Members of Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) foundation called it a “gross exploitation and weaponization of anti semitism” and hypocritical messaging as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netenyahu had rejected a ceasefire agreement in exchange for the Hostages as proposed by Hamas (Haaretz). Families of the hostages in Israel also protested, condemning Netenyahu for not rescuing the hostages. Users on Twitter expressed how this war was never about the hostages to begin with, but instead an ethnic cleansing campaign. Given that Billions of dollars of US taxpayer money is sent to Israel as aid, people were infuriated that their money funded the 7 million dollar advertisement. 

The repetitive pattern of global conflicts coinciding with American cultural events fueled discourse on social media. As seen in the Gaza genocide, the Israeli military agreed to a temporary ceasefire that coincided with Thanksgiving and Black Friday weekend, one of the most crucial fiscal weekends of the year. Netizens claimed that, with the changing opinion on Israel and the boycotts on Israeli goods, the temporary ceasefire was strategically placed to maximize profits off of American consumers. 

Similarly, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in November, also created a massive distraction for Americans, who flocked to NYC and tuned in to watch the parade live. Some users on Twitter highlighted the willful ignorance expressed by some Americans as they booed protesters raising awareness for Palestine. On Feb 4, as the public engaged in discourse and watched the coveted music event, the Emmys, the US and UK attacked Houthi pirates in Yemen who enforced an economic blockade in the Red Sea, standing in support for Palestine. 

The many instances raised the question of how much blame is to be placed on American citizens? Some users came to their defense, claiming that Americans were mere victims to the “capitalist machine” and their “fascist government”, others expressed how it is the duty of citizens of the empire to go out of their way to be aware of their governments and be critical of what their tax dollars support. American culture may not be intended to act as a weapon of mass distraction, however multiple occasions surely indicate that it is weaponized by the US and foreign powers to hide their wrongdoings.