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The NFL lockout, and reports that a deal to end it is near, may seem relevant only to the future of your Sunday afternoons. But NFL players are fighting to receive the same basic benefits that most workers want and need. The players want an equitable share of the economic gains they help create. And they need to increase the security of their healthcare in retirement — a particular worry in a career that often leads to expensive health problems. Reasonable pay for one’s labor and secure health care are things all Americans need to have a fair shot at negotiating for, which is why the NFL players’ dispute with their employers is not just about wealthy football players and greedy owners. The ability to join a union and the enforcement of laws protecting workers should not only be for those who have the capacity to hire high-powered attorneys.The above excerpt was originally published in .