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Thomas on skipping White House visit: “I believe the Federal government has grown out of control”

Jan 23, 2012, 6:52 PM EDT

New Jersey Devils v Boston Bruins Getty Images

Shortly after opting out of the Bruins’ celebratory White House visit, Stanley Cup playoffs MVP Tim Thomas posted an explanation for his absence on his official Facebook page:

I believe the Federal government has grown out of control, threatening the Rights, Liberties, and Property of the People.

This is being done at the Executive, Legislative, and Judicial level. This is in direct opposition to the Constitution and the Founding Fathers vision for the Federal government.

Because I believe this, today I exercised my right as a Free Citizen, and did not visit the White House. This was not about politics or party, as in my opinion both parties are responsible for the situation we are in as a country. This was about a choice I had to make as an INDIVIDUAL.

This is the only public statement I will be making on this topic.

According to the Boston Herald, Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli said he discussed the White House visit for months with Thomas, but declined to reveal why the Conn Smythe-winning netminder opted not to attend.

Chiarelli also said Thomas could be suspended for not showing up for a team event, but will not be.

197 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. sedna1 - Jan 23, 2012 at 10:55 PM

    Regardless of his political opinions and feelings, it was a disrespectful and ill-advised move that he’ll regret when he grows up.

    • whooty - Jan 23, 2012 at 11:03 PM

      took courage though.

      nothing liberals hold in higher esteem than a courageous stand taken against the oppressive machine.

      • sedna1 - Jan 23, 2012 at 11:40 PM

        Would you feel the same way if he protested by refusing to respect the flag and national anthem before games? Given his comments (his “protest” not being directed at either political party, etc.), I don’t see the difference.

        No, I don’t believe Tim Thomas did anything truly courageous.

      • whooty - Jan 24, 2012 at 12:11 AM

        i forgot to include (sarc on) in my last post.

        you raise an interesting point though..

        i don’t know if i would construe his decision not to attend a whitehouse celebration with someone’s decision not to honor the flag or anthem.

        to me, he made clear his choice not to go to the whitehouse was driven by his disdain for what he perceives as the recklessness of government.

        someone who chooses to sit during the anthem or whatever i think is making a more general statement about how they view the totality of the country.

        are government and country the same thing? i would say no.

        i recall carlos delgado, then of the blue jays refusing to stand during the national anthem in 03/04 to protest his dislike of the iraq war. while im sure his anger was with the government at the time, he chose to protest in a way that could have been interpreted to go beyond that.

      • sedna1 - Jan 24, 2012 at 8:29 AM

        Whooty, now I think you’re splitting hairs. Our country and our government are the same. They’re inseparable. Now, if Thomas had said he didn’t go the the White House because he was protesting the Obama administration, that would have been different. But he said that’s not what he was doing. So either he was being disingenuous, which I have no reason to believe he was, or he was disrespecting our government (read country).

  2. clmdcbm23 - Jan 23, 2012 at 10:56 PM

    I’m sorry if all of you bickering miniscule little fools could not read what he said in his statement. All he said was that he disagrees with both sides and that he just can’t stand the government getting involved in peoples personal life. Not that Democrats are bad and Republicans are great, they both stink! Read, learn and maybe then, you might actually get to know some real facts. Over and out.

  3. whooty - Jan 23, 2012 at 10:58 PM

    unless your name is:

    john liebowitz-stewart, michael moore, bill maher, alec baldwin, the view clucks, rosie odonnell, jenean gralafilo (sp), kanye west, louis farrakhan (sp), sean penn, jessie jackson, nancy pelosi, howard dean, andy stern, george soros, or tim robbins..

    your expression of dissatisfaction is unwelcome. (and racist.. and probably homophobic).

  4. tardpalin - Jan 23, 2012 at 10:58 PM

    Fuc# tim thomass.
    He`s a hockey goalie and his opinion doesn`t mean S#!T

  5. falstaffsmind - Jan 23, 2012 at 11:09 PM

    Is it just me, or does the right define love of country in terms that closely resemble the abject hatred for it.

  6. falstaffsmind - Jan 23, 2012 at 11:09 PM

    Is it just me, or does the right define love of country in terms that closely resemble the abject hatred for it.

    • whooty - Jan 23, 2012 at 11:17 PM

      its just you (well probably msnbs and the ny times corporation too)

      you’ve been successfully propagandized into mistaking love of country for love of government

      • falstaffsmind - Jan 23, 2012 at 11:32 PM

        I am not the one who has been propagandized. Do you think Tim Thomas comes to this decision without right-wing radio poison dripping in his ear day after day, year after year? I don’t. As for your thesis: You are right. I do equate my country and my Government. I do think that a country isn’t just a pile of dirt. I do think the same Government that has given this country 236 years of prosperity, freedom and opportunity should be celebrated. I don’t see the virtue in cynicism and pessimism .

      • whooty - Jan 23, 2012 at 11:57 PM

        until this day i had zero knowledge of tt’s personal convictions. as to how he may have come to feel as he does, i am at a total loss and couldn’t possibly speculate.

        i would argue that repeated lies and endless false promises by the us govt have conditioned many citizens to become cynical and pessimistic. from endless and unnecessary wars, to rampant price inflation, to multi-tiered judicial outcomes, to banks and corporations that control the political class through their lobbyists, to record unemployment.

        the choices made by the political class have created vast uncertainty and will very likely rob future generations of americans of the opportunities you take for granted.

        tim thomas isn’t blind to the reality around him, perhaps if more were as cynical as he apparently is, the pessimism you decry would be greatly reduced.

  7. 13yrsmlbvet - Jan 23, 2012 at 11:22 PM

    I was with the Red Sox when we visited the White House in 2008 and Theo didn’t go because of his distaste for George Bush and nobody shit their pants then. Who cares?

  8. daviddmsvcp - Jan 23, 2012 at 11:35 PM

    Here’s why I think TT made a mistake. In my opinion, the #1 job of an NHL player (or NFL, NBA, or MLB player) is to represent the sport and the league, and to grow the fan base.

    TT used the Stanley Cup as an opportunity to make a critical statement about the govt. Granted, it was non-partisan.

    He is allowed to say this, I hope there will be no retribution against him for saying it, but it does not represent the highest standards of professional conduct.

    I also don’t understand why he was vague about what he is unhappy about.

  9. mornelithe - Jan 23, 2012 at 11:43 PM

    So let me see if I have this correctly, Tim Thomas is so upset about the size of Government, that he’s only going to speak…I mean, Facebook, about it….once. Wow, that’s really brave Tim. Congratulations for standing up for your principles, really it must’ve taken some serious dedication to sit back and watch the political landscape of this country degenerate into gridlock while you reaped millions of dollars in Professional Sports. That’s some serious class.

    I have no objection to anyone refusing a visit to the White House, as a means of protest. This, however, is nothing but grandstanding. He says…nay, TYPES…one thing about it, the entire time this country is crumbling, and that’s only to snub his nose at the Presidency. Seriously, way to go Tim, you really proved to us that this really means something to you.

    I’m a Bruins fan, and I find this disgraceful.

  10. toasale - Jan 23, 2012 at 11:45 PM

    I would not go either, and I have never won a da_n thing.

  11. imaduffer - Jan 23, 2012 at 11:46 PM

    “This was about a choice I had to make as an INDIVIDUAL” Does he realize he belongs to a Union?

  12. lanpar - Jan 24, 2012 at 12:01 AM

    Bottom line Obama is black and the right hate that. Tim can say anything he likes.
    If anybody disagrees …. hahahahahahahahah …. name the last American to snub
    his president? I think Obama has been snub a few times , sorry that is the reality
    Jimmy Carter pointed it out and United States has a long way to go……

    Here is some other info for you founding father guys

    United States did institutionalized slavery

    United States has been involved in over 180 military interventions in the past 120 years

    United States polititians spend half their term trying to get re-elected instead of doing their job

    On the plus side:

    Countdown to Super Bowl Begins

    • whooty - Jan 24, 2012 at 12:27 AM

      while we’re on the topic of history..

      the democrat party is the party of slavery and segregation.

      the great emancipator himself, abraham lincoln was a republican

      it was because of republican support in the 1960’s that enabled key civil rights legislation to pass, overcoming strong democrat party opposition.. including one patron saint named albert gore sr.

      full disclosure – im not a republican or democrat

      ps. do you find it strange that democrats have, and have had a virtual monopoly of power in the poorest and most down trodden areas of the united states for the last 50 years? i wonder if keeping black and brown people poor isn’t a wonderful success story for the democrat party.

      how many majority white democrat congressional districts in this country are represented by a minority? answer is zero. i wonder why such open minded and tolerant white liberals dont want to be represented by any people of color?

  13. meaz23 - Jan 24, 2012 at 12:06 AM

    I hope his face is ripped open during the next game and he is never able to play again.

  14. holmdoggie - Jan 24, 2012 at 12:10 AM

    Hey Timmy,

    If your liberties, property and rights are threatened so bad here… then please give up your citizenship and move elsewhere. Maybe Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran or some country like that might have something more to offer you? It must really be tough living like you do and making the money that you do.

    • whooty - Jan 24, 2012 at 12:40 AM

      you’re just the sort of useful idiot the obama re-election team is salivating over.

      • cshearing - Jan 24, 2012 at 8:35 AM

        Really? Sounds very Republican to me. “If you don’t like it, get out.” I have never heard the Democrats use that line; it was a go-to for the Republicans during GWB’s second election, however.

  15. markallan50 - Jan 24, 2012 at 12:11 AM

    From some of the posts I am reading it seems we are still fighting the unCivil War, or maybe the War Between the States of Confusion. From what I gather, Abraham Lincoln should be considered the Father of American Fascism/Socialism (truly bipolar) because he fought a war to preserve a strong central government and limit personal freedoms such as owning slaves and Barak Obama is his direct descendent. Teddy Roosevelt was a job killer and Franklin Roosevelt a closet commie who created the welfare state. The country would have been better off reelecting Herbert Hoover. If Nixon had been elected in ’60 he would have invaded Cuba instead giving in to the Ruskies like JFK. If Barry Goldwater had beaten LBJ in ’64 he would have nuked Hanoi and won the Vietnam War. When Newt Gingrich is elected, things will change! We can get back to the family values of the 1950’s when no one forced us to share drinking fountains or lunch counters!!

    • whooty - Jan 24, 2012 at 12:52 AM

      When Newt Gingrich is elected, things will change!

      things already changed, don’t you remember hope and change from 2008?! the great unifier? the first post partisan presidency?

      close gitmo?
      restore america’s standing in the world?
      falling sea levels?
      no more lobbyists in govt?
      no more debt ceiling increases?
      responsible budgeting?
      no more robbing from future generations?
      end the patriot act?

      give george w barack obama bush his 4th term you vile racist pig!

      • mornelithe - Jan 24, 2012 at 1:54 AM

        Nice try Woody, but your laundry list of things Obama hasn’t done can really be placed firmly at the feet of Congress and the Senate, yes Democrats and Republicans alike are pretty much corrupt beyond saving. But, Obama did try to close Gitmo, and what happened? I’ll save you the time of looking it up. Congress, and the Senate balked at EVERY alternative to having Gitmo opened. Transfer prisoners to the US, no way. Transfer them to the authorities of their home countries, not a chance. All Congress and the Senate. Your angst is misplaced, and thinking a change in the Presidency will somehow rectify all this is simple minded and avoids the basic fact that regardless of who is in power, their one goal is to remain in power. Not to do anything meaningful to progress this country.

        Restore America’s standing in the world? That’s arguably been at least somewhat turned around, I mean, we’re not actively opening new theaters of operation every year.

        Falling sea levels? Wonder what you expect the President to do about that. Be serious here, if you’re going to have a serious discussion. The President has attempted to clamp down on fossil fuel consumption…guess what, blocked by Congress/Senate.

        No more lobbyists in Government? Hmm, I’m guessing SCOTUS may have thrown a monkey wrench into that with the whole Citizens United judgement.

        No more debt ceiling increases? That might be possible if Congress/Senate weren’t busy trying to block every possible meaningful bit of legislation aimed at that end. Sure, the President spent a bunch of money attempting to avoid the collapse of our economy by injecting large amounts into the Auto Industry (TARP was Bush), but that was to save jobs. Know how many jobs the American auto industry has? Let’s just use the Big Three, and that’s about 14 million, or roughly 10% of the workforce. Imagine what would’ve happened if those would’ve failed. We could argue the merits of the TARP legislation too, many say it was just giving more money to people who’d screwed us, but in reality, many, many, many entities not associated with banks had investments that would’ve been shafted. Like schools, for example. Beyond that, the President merely requests debt ceiling increases, Congress/Senate has to approve it.

        Responsible Budgeting? I believe it was Congress/Senate who couldn’t pull together and form meaningful debt cuts. Not the President. And since he doesn’t vote on any legislation (only has the power to veto if there isn’t a 2/3rds majority), present legislation, and direct congress on what he’d ‘like’. Congress/Senate has to actually get it done.

        No more robbing from future generations? Again, congress and the senate are responsible for creating and passing legislation, they are responsible. The President has tackled MANY issues in his time in office, and had many more blocked by a political landscape so fractured, I highly doubt we’ll ever actually realize it in time.

        End the Patriot Act? See: Congress needs to allow such legislation to pass.

        Part of the problem is being President is also about looking like you’re winning the battle against your OWN damn Government. Too many failures (ergo, one party lines up solely because it’s main purpose is to make you a one-term President, and vote down party lines EVERY time, in order to achieve that end, regardless of the end result) and the media simply casts you as ineffective, when the real problem is Congress/Senate are so divided nobody could get anything done.

        They gave him 2 years to counter what took over a decade to create. This isn’t solely the Republican’s fault either, some Bush Sr., some Clinton, some Bush Jr. and viola, an endless quagmire. Continuing to demonize the President, is going to achieve nothing, because all that’ll happen is the same exact thing that’s happened the past 4 years. Partisan politics. And their paychecks never suffer, they never lose their healthcare, their jobs are 100% certain, and they’ve got a ridiculous nest-egg to cushion themselves on afterwards.

        Open your eyes and see the broader picture. If you think Gingrich will change anything, you’re sorely mistaken, and as confused as everyone else who thought it’d take (laugh) 2 years to fix in a country where legislation can take months, if not YEARS to take effect.

      • mornelithe - Jan 24, 2012 at 1:55 AM

        *having Gitmo closed, sorry, didn’t proofread afterwards

      • whooty - Jan 24, 2012 at 9:20 AM

        blah blah blah..

        see, the problem with obama is he is a victim of the expectations he created for his own presidency. everything i referenced were things he promised to do. unfortunately, obama doesn’t know the definition of modesty.

        i understand he’s your guy, and you will defend him forever with your partisan view of things.. but the reality is the guy is a major league disappointment.

        thanks for somehow assuming i like newt gingrich! not quite sure how i created that impression. i would just as soon vote for obama again over newt.

      • mornelithe - Jan 24, 2012 at 1:32 PM

        Blah blah blah is right, you give a laundry list of BS probably copied down directly off of FOX News, I respond and annihilate each of them thoughtfully and logically, and you have absolutely nothing to come back with. Typical of people who get their information fed to them, rather doing their own research.

  16. dylanesq - Jan 24, 2012 at 12:53 AM

    I am totally disgusted with the way that you(Tim Thomas) put your personal vendetta ahead of respect for the President of the USA , Boston and the Bruins.(I am also disappointed that you didn’t learn any better by studying at UVM.

    You have , by your ignorance, fallen for the Republican scare tactics which are designed to keep you occupied, instead of looking at how they and their corporate industry/military industrial complex string puller Presidents have dragged us into the demise that we face.

    The FEDERAL GOVERNMENT is all we have to defend us from becoming the NEW SLAVES.

    • whooty - Jan 24, 2012 at 1:01 AM


  17. flinkin - Jan 24, 2012 at 1:44 AM

    Tim needs a hug, he’s an angry guy.

  18. dcend58 - Jan 24, 2012 at 3:42 AM

    You are a friggin’ hockey player. Its a honor for the TEAM. What an idiot!

  19. jdsj691 - Jan 24, 2012 at 4:13 AM

    Another crybaby millionaire really concerned that his taxes may go up to help balance the budget… Why not go to the White House and ask for a 1 on 1 with the president to express his views… What a sissy to stay away and act retarded…. You confront issues head on, not hide in your mansion in Boston….

  20. hemmingforddogblog - Jan 24, 2012 at 5:38 AM

    This coming from a person who takes pucks to the head for a living? Srsly…

  21. numbersdude - Jan 24, 2012 at 6:46 AM

    The good news is, he was exercising his first amendment right which protects us all. The sad news is he fails to understand that the Office of the Presidency is greater than he who holds the office. When will we Americans learn to do what is right as opposed to doing something because we have the right to do it? His actions is indicative of all that is wrong with the attitude in this country from a Congress right down apparently to a Hockey Player….oh btw…the Office of the Presidency will be here long after your playing days are over…there is life after hockey and trust me there will be those who won’t forget this!…I hope you teach your kids better than to disrespect the Office of the Presidency!

  22. spoiledbratswhosuck - Jan 24, 2012 at 7:09 AM

    Hoorah for for Tim Thomas.

    Republicans + Democrats = 5hit

    15 Trillion in debt
    40 million w/o health care
    50 million on food stamps
    9% unemployment
    16% underemployed
    rampant illegal immigration
    Congress has not balanced a budget in years.

    Any questions?

    • whooty - Jan 24, 2012 at 8:39 AM


  23. havlicekstoletheball - Jan 24, 2012 at 8:12 AM


    You should have been at Bill Clinton’s elbow during Monicagate, because you seem to want to explain away things that are by saying they are not.

    Obamacare: How is government taking over? By mandating that US citizens BUY A PRODUCT, and by providing direct competition to private businesses. Find THOSE powers in Article I. To consider that “interstate commerce” is improper and will not stand up to SCOTUS scrutiny. It is also a violation of the Ninth Amendment. Which says:

    “The enumeration in the Constitution of certain rights, shall not be construed as to deny or disparage others retained by the people.”

    As for the federal-state lawsuit, the Justice Department filed suit against Arizona under the premise that the state law (which is nearly identical to Federal law) conflicts with Federal law. That is the realm of the Supreme Court, and not Congress. and nowhere in the entire Constitution are the words “preeminent authority” used to describe Federal powers. Without SCOTUS declaring the conflict, that is a violation of the Tenth Amendment.

    “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States, respectively, and to the People.”

    So maybe you should read the document yourself. And stop quoting Eric Holder, who sees the Constitution as an obstacle for increasing his power.

  24. thejokewriter - Jan 24, 2012 at 8:28 AM

    Politics didn’t enter into his decision…my ass. It doesn’t matter who is in the White House. You must respect the OFFICE of the President.

  25. buckjohnston - Jan 24, 2012 at 8:33 AM

    Tim, you are a true hero to stand up for what you believe – too bad you live in a city that worships a scumbag senator who murdered Mary Jo and got away with it, as his dirt bag old man had mob connections.

    You should play for a city who honors heros like yourself. Who would want to visit with an animal who espouses the slaughter of the unborn AND born.

  26. smhgbailey - Jan 24, 2012 at 8:36 AM

    Tim, I didn’t think you could out do your decision last summer to disappoint hundreds of kids by skipping your own hockey camps in Massachusetts (even though one week you showed up for a paid autograph signing just down the road from the camp), but you’ve done it. Instead of headlines about the Stanley Cup Champion Boston Bruins going to the White House, you have drawn all the attention to yourself, your political views, and you have embarrassed the Boston Bruins organization. Must suck to live in a country where you can make $5,000,000 a year playing hockey.

  27. comeonnowguys - Jan 24, 2012 at 9:28 AM

    Of course it’s his right not to go.

    Just like it’s my right to say that spurning an invitation to visit the President of the United States is a very disappointing and short-sighted move. I’m sure his teammates loved having this cloud hanging over what should have been a cool yet benign event.

    Not being able to civilly coexist in the same room for the span of even a photo op is the perfect symbol for what’s wrong with our system.

    No matter who gets elected in the coming years, I can only desperately hope this trend does not continue, because it’s unfortunate.

  28. trigzter - Jan 24, 2012 at 12:39 PM

    operation northwoods people learn about your government

  29. vanfoodman - Jan 24, 2012 at 11:20 PM

    To give you an idea of the level of sophistication Thomas has when it comes to politics, the person he would most like to have dinner with is Glenn Beck!!!

  30. stepasidesue - Jan 25, 2012 at 1:33 PM

    I am sure President will not lose any sleep over Tim Thomas not coming to the White house. He didn’t invite Tim, he invited the entire team. There is so much hate and ignorance in this country, it’s frightening. If the Republicans had there way there wouldn’t be any sports unions (or any unions for that matter). Tim should kiss his Obama’s ring.

  31. The Grand Occident - Jan 25, 2012 at 5:34 PM

    Good for Tim. Why do so many White idiots still have an allegiance to a country that wants them eradicated?

  32. The Grand Occident - Jan 25, 2012 at 6:09 PM

    Some of these comments, like this one:

    “The FEDERAL GOVERNMENT is all we have to defend us from becoming the NEW SLAVES”

    help me understand why “democracy” is such a stupid idea.

  33. borderline1988 - Jan 29, 2012 at 12:25 AM

    I recall a number of high profile sports figures who refused invitations to Bush’s White House.
    Something tells me most of the idiots on this board didn’t complain at that time.

    I don’t agree with Thomas’ politics, but I do applaud him for standing up for his beliefs, even when he knows the media is going to crucify him.

  34. bkg63 - Jan 29, 2012 at 11:54 PM

    Tim Thomas has the right to his political views however, I think he showed poor judgement by putting his interests ahead of his Bruin teammates. His opinions/actions notwithstanding, the photo-op with the President (any President) under those circumstances are about THE TEAM!
    Bad Timmy!

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