Rootin’ tootin’ Lauren Boebert was awfully proud of her post-Halloween costume, a “Let’s Go Brandon” dress that, like much of the far right, won’t let a lame meme die. All of it began over a month ago when NBC Sports reporter Kelli Stavast (while interviewing NASCAR driver Brandon Brown at Talladega) mistook a crowd chanting “f*ck Joe Biden” for “Let’s Go Brandon.” Since then, conservative Twitter (and a certain segment of the music world) won’t let it go, but NASCAR officially wants to distance itself from all of that nonsense.
This might be surprising news, given that much of the sport’s audience skews to the right, but here’s how NASCAR president Steve Phelps addressed the subject in his State of the Sport address. He repeatedly called the slogan “unfortunate” (via the Miami Herald), and he elaborated via Deadline:
“I feel for Brandon. I think, unfortunately, it speaks to the state of where we are as a country. We do not want to associate ourselves with politics, the left or the right. We obviously have and we’ve always had, as a sport, tremendous respect for the office of the president, no matter who is sitting.”
Not only did Phelps denounce the slogan, but he made clear that anyone who tries to use NASCAR trademarks on “Let’s Go Brandon” merch will have some legal action coming their way. “We will pursue whoever (is using logos) and get that stuff,” Phelps declared while putting his foot down. “That’s not OK. It’s not OK that you’re using our trademarks illegally, regardless of whether we agree with what the position is.”
Well, some NASCAR drivers either haven’t received the message (surely they have), or (more likely) they don’t care. Following Phelps’ address, Matt DiBenedetto let the slogan fly on Sunday while hopping into his car.
— Benny (@bennyjohnson) November 7, 2021