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NFL players, owners defy Trump on anthem protests

81 Comments
By James Oliphant and Valerie Volcovici

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I love this, but I'd like to know 1) why some people find this offensive and 2) what manner of protest they would not find offensive.

Makes no sense to me.

20 ( +22 / -2 )

I'd like to know 1) why some people find this offensive

Protesting while black.

2) what manner of protest they would not find offensive.

Protesting while white.

23 ( +27 / -4 )

In the past, an issue like this would have instantly united Americans, they would have rallied unquestionably behind the flag and anthem.

But back then, Americans was a proud country and everybody knew at least somebody who died fighting for their country.

-21 ( +3 / -24 )

In the past, Obama urged on both sides mutual understanding and respect:

I want Mr. Kaepernick and others who are on a knee, I want them to listen to the pain that that may cause somebody who, for example, had a spouse or a child who was killed in combat, and why it hurts them to see somebody not standing. I also want people to think about the pain that he may be expressing about somebody who’s lost a loved one that they think was unfairly shot.

Ever the narcissist, Trump is upset as he interprets any protest against injustice in (his!) America as a protest against him personally. Congrats, Don: Self-fulfilling. Your disrespect has now ensured that every downed knee and linked arm is directed against you.

12 ( +13 / -1 )

What if a J-school principal forces the teachers to stand for Kimigayo?

Apparently, people still haven't thought how they would respond to that in relation to this

but I'd like to know 1) why some people find this offensive and 2) what manner of protest they would not find offensive.

Try to compare, which is preferable:

Players peacefully protesting on the field before the game

vs.

White supremacists trumpeting hate and violence (e.g. Charlottesville) in their protests

But back then, Americans was a proud country and everybody knew at least somebody who died fighting for their country.

The prominent presence of members of the US police and military on the field locked arm-in-arm in solidarity today with the NFL owners and players show clearly that these protests are not against those who put their lives on the line for their country, so for you to try to steer it into that path is truly missing the point

The London game was just the beginning:

"NFL players responded to Donald Trump with more protests than ever"

https://www.sbnation.com/2017/9/24/16354916/nfl-protest-national-anthem-donald-trump

A day after Donald Trump tweeted protesting players should be fired, there has been an increase in protests.

Donald Trump attacked NFL players protesting during the national anthem on Friday night. On Sunday, Trump took to Twitter, telling his followers to boycott the NFL. The comments only emboldened the movement and encouraged more players to participate.

Many players who hadn’t participated in the movement started by former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick in the past joined.

Trump said Friday that NFL owners who see players “disrespecting the flag” should say “get that son of a bitch off the field right now, he’s fired.”

"Personally, I think the comments made about my brothers who decided to protest and kneel is kind of what made us no longer be silent. We stand with our brothers,” Suggs said via ESPN. “They have the right to protest. We knelt with them today. Non-violent protest is as American as it gets. We knelt with them today and let them know we are a unified front. There is no dividing us. I guess we're all sons of b------."

It's one thing to criticize how some players are protesting, but it's another thing to call them names and demand they be fired for their right to peaceful protest. The NFL and the NFLPA are showing that, they may not agree how some players are kneeling during the anthem as their way of protest, but they are united with those players to have the right to peacefully protest and not be fired for it.

So, they knelt too just to protest Trump's comments trying to divide them. All these wouldn't have happened if Trump had not made those comments. It took this to unify the NFL owners and the NFLPA, who don't even like each other.

13 ( +14 / -1 )

I agree with Trump. Sack the lot of them. Disgraceful behavior by a bunch of over-paid, precious, out-of-touch, fame-courting whiners.

-20 ( +5 / -25 )

So as a protest against your current president you decide to disgrace your national anthem. Which said anthem doesn't have much to do with that current person "leading" the country but your nation as a whole, its past and struggles, present and future. Yeah, that makes sense.... not.

-18 ( +6 / -24 )

Trump has divided the nation and now the players, their managers and now Stevie Wonder are excercising their right to protest.

National anthems are jingoistic affairs and I try and avoid standing for any of them if I can.

The line has been drawn and it's time to take sides.

13 ( +17 / -4 )

Why is it required to stand during the anthem anyway, is this NK? Didn't the ultra-nationalists try to do the exact same thing here with forcing teachers to stand?

7 ( +10 / -3 )

I agree with Trump. Sack the lot of them. Disgraceful behavior by a bunch of over-paid, precious, out-of-touch, fame-courting whiners.

The NFLPA and NFL owners unitedly disagree that people get fired for their right of peaceful protest

And most of the players doing this are not the overpaid stars but the field grunts who get paid closer to the league minimum

And there's a question who's more out of touch: the ones who live in Japan and criticize, or those who experience this American reality day-in day-out

People have to realize that different people can have different realities - your American reality is not necessarily the same as someone else's American reality

The Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Tomlin said it succinctly: "We will not be divided on this. We got a group of men in there that come from different socioeconomic backgrounds, races, creed, ethnicities and religions, and so forth... Some have opinions. Some don't. We wanted to protect those that don't. We wanted to protect those that do."

12 ( +14 / -2 )

A friend of mine pointed out that the Trump may have broken the law with his ill-considered comments. Pesky thing for Trump, the law.

U.S. Code: Title 18: Part I: Chapter 11: § 227:

Wrongfully influencing a private entity’s employment decisions by a Member of Congress or an officer or employee of the legislative or executive branch.

(a) Whoever, being a covered government person, with the intent to influence, solely on the basis of partisan political affiliation, an employment decision or employment practice of any private entity—

(1) takes or withholds, or offers or threatens to take or withhold, an official act, or

(2) influences, or offers or threatens to influence, the official act of another, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned for not more than 15 years, or both, and may be disqualified from holding any office of honor, trust, or profit under the United States.

(b) In this section, the term “covered government person” means—

(1) a Senator or Representative in, or a Delegate or Resident Commissioner to, the Congress;

(2) an employee of either House of Congress; or

(3) the President, Vice President, an employee of the United States Postal Service or the Postal Regulatory Commission, or any other executive branch employee (as such term is defined under section 2105 of title 5, United States Code).

11 ( +12 / -1 )

This stuff is overwhelming proof of just how far we've come and how good we all have it in the good ol' US of A. Here we have the civil rights struggles of our time: How multi-millionaires are expected to compose themselves when they listen to a song, right up there with which bathroom people are allowed to use when they have to take a dump while shopping at Target, and the vicious oppression that we all face when some drunk college kid wears a sombrero and a fake mustache to a Halloween party.

Lord have mercy.

-8 ( +2 / -10 )

Whatever the rights and wrongs, must say the sight of these folks on their knees doesn't really make much of a positive statement to me.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

If Trump hadn't openly declared his support for Nazis and Klansmen, this whole scandal could have been avoided. As it is, America is disgusted with his racism, and this current phenomenon demonstrates that disgust.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

Burning BushToday  07:09 am JST

"In the past, an issue like this would have instantly united Americans, they would have rallied unquestionably behind the flag and anthem."

Not sure which past you are referring to. I was in school in the US during the Vietnam War era and many students were opposed to the requirement to say the Pledge of Alligience with hand over heart facing the flag each morning. Protests and boycotts ensued and the anti-war students won the right to not recite the pledge and not place hand over heart. The compromise required students to have written permission from guardians for this and to quietly stand during the recitation by other students.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

kawabegawa198Today  08:30 am JST

I agree with Trump. Sack the lot of them. Disgraceful behavior by a bunch of over-paid, precious, out-of-touch, fame-courting whiners.

Police, coaches, team owners and league executives evidently don't agree, so who gives a stuff what you think. Or do you think everyone who agrees with the players should be sacked as well?

14 ( +16 / -2 )

A league that fines players for wearing the "wrong" gear and penalizes their team in the game for excessive celebration after scoring. Now says players should be able to express themselves however they want suddenly? But only in the political statements against our president and in no other way?

Not buying it and it shouldn't be part of sports. Players went to another country and knelt for their own country anthem and flag then stood up and respected the U.K. one?

so Trump may have broken the law huh? Let me guess, the punishment for that crime is "impeachment" right?

-14 ( +5 / -19 )

BlacklabelToday  10:57 am JST

A league that fines players for wearing the "wrong" gear and penalizes their team in the game for excessive celebration after scoring. Now says players should be able to express themselves however they want suddenly? But only in the political statements against our president and in no other way?

Not buying it and it shouldn't be part of sports.

Whereas you think sports should be part of politics and the President should be able to tell owners of teams what to do?

so Trump may have broken the law huh? Let me guess, the punishment for that crime is "impeachment" right?

That's right, IF a case is made before Congress that it's an impeachable offense and articles of impeachment are passed by a majority vote in the House.

8 ( +11 / -3 )

No, sports shouldn't be part of politics or any " cause of the day". These players have been fined for wearing patriotic colored cleats after 9/11 attack or the wrong brand of headphone before the game.

They are also not allowed to use social media from a certain time before the game until a certain time after it. No one protesting their free speech right about that? But now only when it's anti-Trump they can just say/do anything under free speech?

Coaches have been fired for leading teams in prayer on the field after the game is over. so some time of protest of whatever is fine but prayer on the field is not. Nothing wrong with that?

-11 ( +5 / -16 )

If this turns into something political, Trump wins this easily. But in my opinion he has more than made his point how he feels and no one can question his patriotism or love for his country. Now he should get back to his agenda and let these people bear the individual consequences of what they are doing.

-14 ( +3 / -17 )

On this issue Trump should have kept his mouth shut. As for me I do not like the players taking a knee (any player, white or black, for any reason).

As one who served, I also understand this is one of the founding principles of our nation, the right to free speech and expression.

Considering the above:

I do not like the players doing this

Bringing this issue up, especially the way President Trump did, is beneath the office. Better for him to keep his mouth closed.

@Blacklabel - I do not agree with all of your post but you brought up a very good point. The NFL is "Bread and Circuses" and it is about money. The commissioner and owners are all 1%'ers (commish salary is 40 million or something). The NFL is run like a dictatorship with no expression (unless NFL sanctioned) allowed. You do make a good point and I wonder why your post was voted down.

The President should keep out of this.

There is nothing in the U.S. anymore that is not scathed by petty political quabbles.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Kim Jong Un must be going bananas. Here he is, trying to frighten the world, and we're over here ignoring him because Trump and some millionaire dudes are upset over a song. Kim's dog probably got kicked into a wall today, and his old lady probably has a shiner because of all this.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

Ok put Trump's comments aside. Yes I find it very hypocritical that every aspect of the NFL player and NFL brand is micromanaged down to what brand of apparel is allowed, what color it can be and what causes can or cannot be supported by decals on helmets or clothing. Teams are penalized in the game for player's dancing too much after they score.

Yet the owner as their employer is simply powerless to make them stand up and pay respect to our flag and anthem?

i guess I just want to know, which types of free speech can your employer fire you for and which type do they just have to accept?

which leads back to my point are people really in support of disrespecting our flag and anthem or are they simply in support of disrespecting Trump?

-5 ( +5 / -10 )

No one can question his patriotism or love for his country

Who? Draft-dodging Trump?

Come on. This is Trump throwing red meat to the chest-thumpers. He'd change his mind on this faster than he'd ship jobs abroad to save himself money.

16 ( +17 / -1 )

BlacklabelToday  11:24 am JST

No, sports shouldn't be part of politics or any " cause of the day". 

Then Trump should have kept his stupid opinions to himself.

If this turns into something political, Trump wins this easily. 

It doesn't look like he's winning at the moment.

Now he should get back to his agenda...

He should. He won't.

...and let these people bear the individual consequences of what they are doing.

What, you think there will be any?

Yet the owner as their employer is simply powerless to make them stand up and pay respect to our flag and anthem?

I kind of get the idea from the owners' comments and actions that they're backing the players on this one. Don't you?

New England Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft, who has dined with Trump and who the president considers a friend, criticized Trump and defended players' right to protest.

"I am deeply disappointed by the tone of the comments made by the president on Friday," Kraft said in a statement. Kraft said he supports his players' "right to peacefully affect social change and raise awareness in a manner they feel is most impactful."

Jaguars owner Shad Khan linked arms with team players in solidarity at the game against the Ravens in London's Wembley Stadium. Khan donated $1 million to the Trump inauguration fund.

And Robert McNair, chairman of the Houston Texans team, said Trump's comments were "divisive and counterproductive to what our country needs right now." McNair also donated $1 million to Trump.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said Trump's comments in Alabama revealed an "unfortunate lack of respect" for the NFL and its players.

Those comments are coming from people who donated money to him. You still think Trump is winning this easily?

7 ( +9 / -2 )

But in my opinion he has more than made his point how he feels and no one can question his patriotism or love for his country

I doubt the patriotism of any man who did his all to avoid the draf, but then has the nerve to trash a decorated veterans and their families.

Talking big about respect and patriotism? Give me a break, Donny.

12 ( +13 / -1 )

BlacklabelToday  11:43 am JST

Ok put Trump's comments aside.

Why? This article is all about Trump's comments and the response from the people concerned. Whatever you or I think is only marginally relevant.

which leads back to my point are people really in support of disrespecting our flag and anthem or are they simply in support of disrespecting Trump?

Disrespecting Trump most likely. But he brings all the disrespect on himself.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

National anthems are jingoistic affairs and I try and avoid standing for any of them if I can.

I have no problem with that, but when you are on a team and you have some political or religious objections, do it either before or after the game. No wonder ticket sales are falling fast, no wonder people are cutting their ESPN cable.

The line has been drawn and it's time to take sides.

Im on the side of the US.

Then Trump should have kept his stupid opinions to himself.

So should have Kaepernick.

It doesn't look like he's winning at the moment

Neither is NFL, NBA and especially ESPN. The mouse is hemorrhaging.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

do it either before or after the game

Isn't the anthem played before the game?

And I really do not get this 'respect' thing. These people are kneeling humbly, heads bowed, looking to me way more respectful than the hand-on-heart, chest-out, lookout-me-bein-patriotic pose Trump and his friends seem to think should be de rigueur.

How many posters complaining about these sportsmen not falling into line are the same people that come to Japan and make snide, Oh-we're-so-much-better remarks about the nail that sticks up getting hammered down in Japanese society? Seems to me there's plenty of folk in the US ready and eager to wave those hammers about.

Trump's on the brink of starting a nuclear war in Asia, and all folk can worry about is what people do while a bit of music is being played and a bit of cloth waved about?

12 ( +13 / -1 )

that was the main catalyst for this.

Nonsense. Its been going on much, much longer than that. And by design, too.

"If you can convince the lowest white man he's better than the best colored man, he won't notice you're picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he'll empty his pockets for you."-LBJ

, but when you are on a team and you have some political or religious objections,

Fyi, the National Anthem is sang before the game. But, I guess your point is that, protest is fine, as long as no one sees it? Am I wrong?

No wonder ticket sales are falling fast, no wonder people are cutting their ESPN cable.

Two weeks into the season. Kinda early to make such a declaration.

Im on the side of the US.

The side of the US? What does that even mean? Lol

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Trump is a MINORITY president. His administration is a MINORITY administration. The things they say and do are supported by a MINORITY of the American people, and opposed by a MAJORITY -- and that majority is growing and growing! So, Trump, is Stevie Wonder as overrated as Meryl Streep -- hah! One flag, one anthem, one people, one country, one race (oops!), and one Fuhrer (oops!)!!

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Trump suggested any protesting football player was a "son of a bitch" and should lose his job.

The man ought to be ashamed of himself. A president in office using that language and stirring up more hatred dividing HIS nation (?). It's time he realizes he himself acts like/is a son **** and should lose his job.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

Blacklabel: "No, sports shouldn't be part of politics or any " cause of the day". 

But you clearly support Trump -- the president -- with his illegal rantings and demands, which are the most political part of the whole thing!

Ah, Trump, the "great uniter"... if that means he is uniting pretty much everyone against him but the absolute blind. Support for the GOP is now at an all-time low and Trump drags the party further down into the mud. Well done, people! hahaha.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

CaptainDingleheimer: "Kim Jong Un must be going bananas. Here he is, trying to frighten the world, and we're over here ignoring him because Trump and some millionaire dudes are upset over a song. "

More likely Kim's laughing his arse off as he watches Trump fail in uniting the people of the US on anything and Trump has apoplectic fits about it.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

BlacklabelToday  11:28 am JST

If this turns into something political, Trump wins this easily. But in my opinion he has more than made his point how he feels and no one can question his patriotism or love for his country. Now he should get back to his agenda and let these people bear the individual consequences of what they are doing.

Yeah, the man of a thousand deferments ''loved'' his country so much he skipped out of the Vietnam War. Slant the narrative any way you and he see fit.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Isn't the anthem played before the game?

Off the field, in the locker room, in the parking lot, wherever you want, but not on the field.

And I really do not get this 'respect' thing. These people are kneeling humbly, heads bowed, looking to me way more respectful than the hand-on-heart, chest-out, lookout-me-bein-patriotic pose Trump and his friends seem to think should be de rigueur. 

I wouldn’t expect you to understand with all due respect.

How many posters complaining about these sportsmen not falling into line are the same people that come to Japan and make snide, Oh-we're-so-much-better remarks about the nail that sticks up getting hammered down in Japanese society? Seems to me there's plenty of folk in the US ready and eager to wave those hammers about.

Hmmmmm....

Trump's on the brink of starting a nuclear war in Asia, and all folk can worry about is what people do while a bit of music is being played and a bit of cloth waved about?

Not Trump, Kim. Trump is just reminding him what will happen if he keeps it up and then it’s on Mattis’s Shoulders.

Nonsense. Its been going on much, much longer than that. And by design, too. 

Naw, Holder started down the race card road and that stupid beer summit.

"If you can convince the lowest white man he's better than the best colored man, he won't notice you're picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he'll empty his pockets for you."-L

“Sigh” the race card again? Really?

Two weeks into the season. Kinda early to make such a declaration.

I follow the Stock market, ESPN is hemorrhaging and yes, they are losing quite a bit.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/mikeozanian/2017/09/23/nfl-broadcasting-stocks-slump-as-protests-rise-and-tv-ratings-slump/#6f1b35574eec

The side of the US? What does that even mean? Lol

I would never disrespect my country, my flag or my president. Yes, I didn’t like Obama, but saying obscene words, using epithets, No.

-10 ( +2 / -12 )

"If NFL fans refuse to go to games until players stop disrespecting our Flag & Country, you will see change take place fast," Trump wrote on Sunday morning on Twitter. "Fire or suspend!"

Won't happen. Am actually surprised that Trump doesn't realise he's fighting an unwinnable battle i.e DT vs sports stars. Does he really think fans, even those who voted for him, will pick pseudo-patriotism over football/basketball players & will vote with their feet/remote controls? He's even more deluded than I thought he was then.

In other nations, the sports minister and/or football federation, clubs, organisers etc take care of such matters, not the PM/President (who may voice his/her opinion but does not insist on having the last word). Being president (or CEO, any leader in their own field etc) doesn't mean you can/should have your say on absolutely everything. Reckon doing so actually cheapens the presidency.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

bass4funk: "Off the field, in the locker room, in the parking lot, wherever you want, but not on the field."

You're back-tracking again.

"Im on the side of the US."

Not that that makes any sense, but the players who kneel or not, whether you like it or not, are just as much American and love their country as much, if not more. At least in their case they're not siding with a man who would have it as a dictatorship where it's his way or you're fired -- something YOU stand behind. That's not love of country. It's love of power.

"I would never disrespect my country, my flag or my president. Yes, I didn’t like Obama, but saying obscene words, using epithets, No."

Hogwash -- you STILL disrespect him and use him as a tool of deflection, call him "The Anointed One" while you bow down to Trump like a god, and call him and others names all the time while claiming you are not partisan.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

Isn't the anthem played before the game?

Off the field, in the locker room, in the parking lot, wherever you want, but not on the field.

Let's clarify this. You want the anthem and the flag to be removed from the field, and you want all the 'patriotic' stuff, whether standing or kneeling, to take part off the field?

Hmmmmm....

Again, more clarification needed. You agree? Disagree? Have no answer? Need time to digest and think about it?

Not Trump, Kim. Trump is just reminding him what will happen if he keeps it up

They're two petulant men-children throwing their toys out of the pram. All the more reason for folk to want to keep their eye on the ball, I would have thought. (Not the football...)

I didn’t like Obama, but saying obscene words, using epithets, No

I recall you calling him the Sainted Obama, the Anointed One, a spoiled brat. Not obscene I'll grant you, but you used them often enough to turn them into epithets.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

Off the field, in the locker room, in the parking lot, wherever you want, but not on the field.

Yes, of course. We wouldn't want to offend Trump supporters, who Trump critics "snowflakes." Irony at its best. No good reason, just "don't do it because its offends me."

Naw, Holder started down the race card road and that stupid beer summit.

No, as I've pointed out this whole "race card" business has been going on since LBJ. Part and parcel of the Republican's Southern Strategy.

I follow the Stock market, ESPN is hemorrhaging and yes, they are losing quite a bit.

Ticket sales have nothing to do with Espn "hemorrhaging." Get back to me when you have a meaningful sampling size. Good try though.

I would never disrespect my country, my flag or my president.

No one is disrespecting the country. Who cares about the flag, it pales in comparison to the rights of US citizens. Legally you can "disrespect" the flag. But there is no "American side," there are a plurality opinion and declaring yourself on the side of the "US" breathtakingly arrogant. Even for Trump fans. And the president? Well, see below:

Yes, I didn’t like Obama, but saying obscene words, using epithets, No.

Only questioning his citizenship. What a bold distinction to make. Same with Trump. The same fool whining about respect is the same man who claimed Obama was a Kenyan, trashed John McCain and the Khan Khan family. Not to mention he dodged the draft. Brilliant distinction to make.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

The American people, especially fans will decide if this disrespect for our nation is acceptable or not.

its crazy to me that people are actually so caught up in "defying Trump" that they actually think it's ok to disrespect the very country and fans who allow them to be rich for chasing a ball around.

-9 ( +1 / -10 )

its crazy to me that people are actually so caught up in "defying Trump" that they actually think it's ok to disrespect the very country and fans who allow them to be rich for chasing a ball around.

The country doesn't allow them to do squat. The fans do. Has nothing to do with the country. And if you really wanted to keep politics out of sports, then maybe the military shouldn't pay the NFL for patriotic displays. Its crazy to my how angry "freedom loving" Trump supporters get when they hear something they don't wike. Aww, precious :D

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Not that that makes any sense,

Yeah, to most libs and foreigners, perhaps, but hey...

but the players who kneel or not, whether you like it or not, are just as much American and love their country as much, if not more.

I doubt it.

At least in their case they're not siding with a man who would have it as a dictatorship where it's his way or you're fired -- something YOU stand behind. That's not love of country. It's love of power. 

I could flip it around, these morons are screaming about something that know nothing about, in the case of inciting riots and beat down on cops, giving the impression that every cop is on the prowl to kill blacks is so over the top insulting. Again, it’s not wonder Kaepernick can’t get signed and the only thing it looks like he signed now is the end if his football career.

Hogwash -- you STILL disrespect him and use him as a tool of deflection, call him "The Anointed One"

He is, and how is that a racist term? Please explain that one.

while you bow down to Trump like a god, and call him and others names all the time while claiming you are not partisan.

I bow down to No man, I just respect the man, that’s all. The only person I bow down and worship is my beautiful better half.

Let's clarify this. You want the anthem and the flag to be removed from the field, and you want all the 'patriotic' stuff, whether standing or kneeling, to take part off the field?

No, I don’t want any of their politics on the field at all. Just do what you’re paid to do, that’s it.

Need time to digest and think about it?

Hmmmmm...

-9 ( +2 / -11 )

these morons are screaming about something that know nothing about

Who's screaming? The players are kneeling quietly heads bowed. I don't see a single one of them screaming. Now the moron in the White House does plenty of screaming and rabble-rousing.....

He is, and how is that a racist term? Please explain that one.

Who claimed it was a racist term? You said *I would never disrespect my country, my flag or my president. *It doesn't have to be racist to be disrespectful. You have shown a marked degree of disrespect towards Obama.

I don’t want any of their politics on the field at all.

Just the politics you agree with, heh? So much for free speech.

I defend your right to say whatever I agree with, and nowt else?

8 ( +9 / -1 )

no one can question his patriotism or love for his country.

So much love he cosied up to 9/11 sponsors Saudi Arabia. So much patriotism he got Russia involved to help steal the elections.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

I would never disrespect my country, my flag or my president.

Calling the previous president a dictator isn't disrespectful?

My president

You posted Obama wasn't your president. Does "my president" only apply to presidents you voted for?

10 ( +11 / -1 )

Voters will support Trump on this issue if it becomes part of actual politics beyond just bashing Trump for a Sunday. I don't see any Dem politicians jumping in on this one.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

its crazy to me that people are actually so caught up in "defying Trump" that they actually think it's ok to disrespect the very country and fans who allow them to be rich for chasing a ball around.

It is ok. It's a democracy (isn't it?) and people are allowed protest.

But you seem to be missing the point; the stance they are taking shows a love of their country and they are standing up to (or rather, kneeling down) it being hijacked by an unfit, racist, divisive president.

America, the flag, the anthem, the office of President, the very concept of what America once stood for has been sullied by Donald Trump and his acolytes.

What a shame you point blank refuse to acknowledge this sad occurence.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

I don't see any Dem politicians jumping in on this one.

Apart from Donna Edwards. Early days, yet.

But another nail in the coffin for the vile administration of evil.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Yes, of course. We wouldn't want to offend Trump supporters, who Trump critics "snowflakes." Irony at its best. No good reason, just "don't do it because its offends me."

Funny, many people I personally know don’t like Trump and are very insulted by what these morons are doing.

No, as I've pointed out this whole "race card" business has been going on since LBJ. Part and parcel of the Republican's Southern Strategy.

LBJ’s great society, how long did he say he wanted Blacks to vote Democrat?

Ticket sales have nothing to do with Espn "hemorrhaging." Get back to me when you have a meaningful sampling size. Good try though.

Overall, they do. People are tuning out and turning off their TV, they’re both linked, It’s all there, I posted it. Anyway, the mouse is bleeeeeeding cash!

No one is disrespecting the country.

Yes, they are as well as disrespecting the people that are coming to watch them play.

Who cares about the flag, it pales in comparison to the rights of US citizens.

Thaaaaaat’s exactly the problem and like most liberals that claim they are tolerant, they are exactly the opposite.

Legally you can "disrespect" the flag. But there is no "American side," there are a plurality opinion and declaring yourself on the side of the "US" breathtakingly arrogant. Even for Trump fans. And the president? Well, see below:

Ok, so anarchy all the way, I got it now. Anyway, it’s being totally disrespectful and if you choose to do so, that’s your prerogative. I love my country and what it stands for and if you want to focus ONLY on the negativity, then you can’t be proud of any country. I take the good and the bad. Remember the them both, they are inseparable and we’ve done more good and if people can’t get over the bad things of the past, they don’t have to stay in the country or study hard, get a great job and move to California or NYC where all the 1% rich elites live that you guys want to tax out of oblivion.

Only questioning his citizenship. What a bold distinction to make.

I never jumped on that wagon, sorry.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Think about this whole latest debacle for a moment. Trump has basically indicated that it's fine for nazis to protest but black guys kneeling down? Apparently unacceptable. This is his raw disgust at freedom of expression when it's not going his way.

And the vilification of those involved in the protest (which has morphed from anti-police brutality into something more) is a crude and transparent attempt to portray black athletes as un-American.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

bass4funk: "Yeah, to most libs and foreigners, perhaps, but hey..."

No... to people with a brain who aren't told what to do or think by The National Review (which is just a bunch of brainless hacks to begin with).

6 ( +8 / -2 )

bass4funk: "Funny, many people I personally know don’t like Trump and are very insulted by what these morons are doing."

Ah, yes... more "people I know" anecdotes again, without a shred of proof. Might as well be people in the mirror. Heck, they no doubt are.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

In the eyes of entitled people any act or form of protest is defiance. "Sipping a cup of tears"

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Trump has succeeded in uniting the USA....against Donald Trump.  

Well played sir.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Think about this whole latest debacle for a moment. Trump has basically indicated that it's fine for nazis to protest

Show me where he said verbatim that it’s ok for Nazis to protest and I’ll apologize. He said such a thing.

but black guys kneeling down?

What is up with you guys and COLOR?! I guess that’s the only recourse you guys have to fall back on in an argument.

Apparently unacceptable. This is his raw disgust at freedom of expression when it's not going his way.

It’s even more disgusting to think this has to do with race when it has to do with one stupid moron and his color has nothing to do with it, but his actions.

And the vilification of those involved in the protest (which has morphed from anti-police brutality into something more) is a crude and transparent attempt to portray black athletes as un-American.

I see. ROFL!

No... to people with a brain who aren't told what to do or think by The National Review (which is just a bunch of brainless hacks to begin with).

I see, so the smart people happen to be all liberal. So why are they all in the wilderness and still can’t win ANY elections? Yeah, smart....lol

Ah, yes... more "people I know" anecdotes again, without a shred of proof.

You calling me a liar? Without proof?

Trump has succeeded in uniting the USA....against Donald Trump

They can line up in 8 years

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

NFL players and owners who supporting kneeling are anti American.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

i would simply like to know what Trump has done to cause supposed racism against African Americans to be worse than it already was under Obama. Even Floyd Mayweather is wondering why this is an issue now when it wasn't before.

Even the St. Louis shooting happened under Obama. Just because the verdict which Trump had noting to do with came out now he is to blame?

And the NFL banned helmet decals for 5 policemen killed by BLM associated person to avoid politics but now "defy Trump" is a thing they support instead?

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

no one can question his patriotism or love for his country.

Trump's love for his country is similar to his belief in religion: it all depends on what's in it for him. Two leading theories of why he refuses to release his tax returns are that he stiffed America for a decade or that he's accepted a lot of money from America's greatest advisory, Russia. Either case is damning. Trump's dedication to his country is on par with his fidelity to his wives.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

"Trump is a MINORITY president. His administration is a MINORITY administration. The things they say and do are supported by a MINORITY of the American people, and opposed by a MAJORITY -- and that majority is growing and growing!"

Totally wrong! The opposite is happening. We (people who actually live in the US) saw through the elitist Hollywood liberals before the election and the same thing goes for the elitist rich black football players.

"The American people, especially fans will decide if this disrespect for our nation is acceptable or not."

Spot on!

"I see, so the smart people happen to be all liberal. So why are they all in the wilderness and still can’t win ANY elections? Yeah, smart....lol."

Snap!

"i would simply like to know what Trump has done to cause supposed racism against African Americans to be worse than it already was under Obama. Even Floyd Mayweather is wondering why this is an issue now when it wasn't before."

You won't find this in the MSM.

Why do the majority of the liberals here believe the MSM? Didn't you learn anything from the last election?

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Even Floyd Mayweather is wondering 

Boy, you know you're on shaky ground when you look to a professional boxer and wife beater for more clarity.

would simply like to know what Trump has done to cause supposed racism against African Americans to be worse than it already was under Obama

Oh gee, I dunno. Maybe calling protesters SoBs. Or perhaps its the complete double standard held by Donny. White supremacists and counter protesters= fine people on both sides. Counter protesters, peacefully kneeling during NA= SoBs.

Let's just start with that.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

thats why I said EVEN Floyd Mayweather knows something isnt right with all this nonsense.

NFL has their own domestic abusers and traumatic head injury issues they need to be dealing with. All this supposed racism barely affects their actual players as they are famous and rich and are pretty much exempt from any of that due to their social class and athlete status.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

All this supposed racism barely affects their actual players as they are famous and rich and are pretty much exempt from any of that due to their social class and athlete status.

And to the poor or working class protestors its "get a job, you bums," isn't it? Professional athletes, regardless of race, represent a very, very small portion of the US population. It'd be a mistake to point to black athletes and say, "nope, no racism here."

Look up Philando Castile and also the Chicago police shooting cover up. And nothing got done, that's just the tip of the iceberg.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

bass4funkToday  05:46 pm JST

"Ah, yes... more "people I know" anecdotes again, without a shred of proof."

You calling me a liar? Without proof?

What proof is there these people exist? I daresay they do, but are they going to come on here and back you up? Or are you going to provide us with their names and contact details. Hint: arguments are more convincing when they're verifiable. No one cares for personal anecdotes about what friend said one thing and what friend said another.

JuliusCaesarToday  09:32 pm JST

"Police, coaches, team owners and league executives evidently don't agree, so who gives a stuff what you think."

The same can be said of you.

I kept my actual opinion on the subject to myself, in case you didn't notice.

Totally wrong! The opposite is happening. We (people who actually live in the US) saw through the elitist Hollywood liberals...

That's where I stop reading and dismiss the rest as tedious, shrill, alt-right whining.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

The dotard should be impeached for bringing the oval office into disrepute.Talking about SOBs? So classless and the usual suspects on here defending him is pathetic AF. But that is what freedom of speech is,but unfortunately,with dotard lovers,it only applies in certain matters.And we all know that it's in racial ones, but your cards are marked.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Just stop playing the national anthems at all. What has sport to do with nationalism, anyways? Ok, sure for the Olympics, or some world events, fine. But why bother in a regular league game? Ya, America, we know you love your stupid national anthem and flag. So what? So stoopid.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

There is a lot of racism in America and I don't think Caucasians are the main carriers of that disease.

I most definitely agree.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

To me, it's so hypocritical of Trump that he spends all his time attacking athletes who don't follow all protocols strictly to a tee (e.g. standing, hand on heart, etc.) when the national anthem is being played and peacefully protesting, yet doesn't bat an eye when there are white supremacists brandishing torches and committing wanton acts of violence in the street. Trump should spend less time with childish tweets, playing rounds of golf, taking long extended vacations, and wasting the budget of the Secret Service, and more time trying to "make America great".

1 ( +2 / -1 )

For some of you, standing for the anthem is silly. I get that.

For lots of people, it isn't.

There has been a tradition of playing the anthem at sporting events for years, and it was always customary to stand. I'm not American, but from what I understand, it has special meaning there, because it's one thing that unites people. People of different races, backgrounds, religions, creeds etc, show respect for the flag.

I think they should stand.

If you sit down because at one time you aren't happy with your country, then different people would be standing and sitting depending on the topic they are upset about.

People go to sports to forget about political issues. There is nothing wrong with football players of any color making speeches, giving money, kneeling in parks, protesting outside police stations.

But lots of ordinary Americans who love their country and their flag go to watch football players making millions play football - often in stadiums that their tax dollars have paid for.

The difference with conservatives is that they will exercise their free speech and criticize Obama or different policies but gladly stand for the anthem out of respect for their country, and in order to not offend people around them.

If Colin can kneel and wear socks saying cops are pigs, I think it's okay for Trump to say what he thinks about it.

Good on him. And I'd say there are millions of football-loving Americans who agree with him

Football players follow lots of rules about what to wear, what not to do after a touchdown, etc etc.

Standing up for the anthem shouldn't be a hard thing to do.

Anyway, just wait till next weekend. I predict attendance and viewing will be down by 20%.

A lot of people will lose interest in watching overpaid people diss the flag.

And for what it's worth, there is a tradition of standing for the anthem of other countries too.

I'd stand for the American anthem.

As for North Korea, this has nothing to do with it. But saying that Trump is on the same level as Kim, is really showing lack of knowledge of what's been going on in North Korea.

You don't have to be a conservative to want Kim stopped, and nothing anyone has done so far has worked.

Sadly, for Trump, he has to fix the incompetence of the last eight years.

You'll probably find that Trump's tough words and actions and getting the UN on side, will lead to NK negotiating.

I hope there's a peaceful resolution - but if there isn't, it won't be Trump's fault.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I hope there's a peaceful resolution - but if there isn't, it won't be Trump's fault.

Nice speech. But that flag doesn't unite people when a s.o.b. dishing out division is in charge.

The most patriotic thing Americans can do is turn patriotism on its head.

Trump has done that - only fair the NFL and others do the same back at him.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

It's an odd thing about people & flags; the more they love the national flag, the more they seem to hate lots of the people who share that national flag. Similar to Republicans, they claim to be be the party that loves America the most but seem to hate most of the people that actually live there.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

And down down down goes the NFL business. Perhaps not a bad thing after all. More to life than the game. This entire situation has been built on a bad business model. Now it's coming to light.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

they are not defying trump they are defying their country and spitting on their countries flag and traditions.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

they are not defying trump they are defying their country and spitting on their countries flag and traditions.

Naw, we hate Trump. If you didn't notice, kneeling was pretty uncommon until Donny just had to open his piehole at a clan rally in Alabama.

So, how'd that work? Strange lost, more than 200 players protested. So much winning ;)

1 ( +1 / -0 )

comical for the rest of the world to watch!! Old trumpy is really making America great but not really in the way he would like.The greatest loser maybe.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

This will backfire. Most NFL fans are not on board with this (no matter how the media try to paint it) and it will have a negative effect on ratings and attendance....

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

they are not defying trump they are defying their country and spitting on their countries flag and traditions.

They are spitting on the traditions of murder and mayhen committed against black people for generations and generations.

How are black people supposed to protest? Damned if they stand up and make a difference like BLM and damned if they kneel down.

Flags and anthems are a load of old pony, anyway.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

This will backfire. Most NFL fans are not on board with this (no matter how the media try to paint it) and it will have a negative effect on ratings and attendance....

I agree. The loud booing at the Cowboys / Arizona game should quickly put this to rest. Protest on your own time, not when costomers are shelling out hundreds of dollars to see a sporting event.

Flags and anthems are a load of old pony, anyway

I dreamt last night that all the globalists beamed themselves off to another planet and set up their own little Star Trek utopia. Then my dream fast forwarded 15 years and Bruce Willis had to put a reconstruction team together to save the new found planet from the dictators that quickly took over for a lack of independent thought and action. It seems their goals were not very realistic.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Protest on your own time, not when costomers are shelling out hundreds of dollars to see a sporting event.

And how much valuable time did the protests take?

I dreamt last night that all the globalists beamed themselves off to another planet and set up their own little Star Trek utopia. Then my dream fast forwarded 15 years and Bruce Willis had to put a reconstruction team together to save the new found planet from the dictators that quickly took over for a lack of independent thought and action. It seems their goals were not very realistic.

MLK had a dream too. Some people thought it unrealistic.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

For the majority of Americans, and for a majority of humans all over the world, the realization that a president of the United States would praise white supremacists, neo nazis, and klansmen, is a real shock to the system. Such behavior by a president is anathema. Kneeling during the national anthem is a direct response to the behavior of our racist president. He, and his actions, are unacceptable to most Americans. That is what this is about. Most Americans feel the need to demonstrate that they are not a part of this terrible administration.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Trump voters: Do you want the NFL to fail? If the players never stop kneeling do you want the entire organization to go under? What is your feeling if the players never stop kneeling?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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