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Tim Thomas Declines Invitation To Attend White House With Boston Bruins Teammates

Thank you, Tim Thomas, for providing us with a silly controversy that could have easily been avoided! The Boston Bruins goalie was scheduled to visit with President Barack Obama and the rest of the team at the White House on Monday to celebrate their 2011 Stanley Cup victory. Instead, he declined, and nobody is really sure why.

All the Bruins would say at this point is that they would address the matter.

The Bruins apparently knew about Thomas' absence and won't suspend him, though they still aren't thrilled with his decision. But all that is secondary. The big thing is this raises some IMPORTANT QUESTIONS, because as SBNation.com notes, Thomas is an outspoken republican. Is an athlete allowed to have political views? Can he take those political views too seriously? Should he respect a president for whom he probably didn't vote? Like I said, IMPORTANT QUESTIONS.

Soon, we'll have answers, as Thomas is supposed to provide an explanation on his Facebook page later Monday night. That's good, because these IMPORTANT QUESTIONS need IMPORTANT ANSWERS.

UPDATE: Here is that statement:

"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. TT"