Trump says National Football League team owners are 'afraid of their players'

Friday, 29 Sep, 2017

"His presentation of the anthem is respectful, powerful and done with reverence", Ravens spokesman Kevin Byrne, one of the judges, said at the time.

"They have rules for everything".

Kaepernick, the Seahawks and every single player who has taken a knee in solidarity have had experience with or seen de facto racism.

I believe there is another paradigm change required by the NFL.

Players and coaches took podiums during the NFL's weekly media day to field questions about the protests and whether they'll demonstrate again this weekend. The ugly side of that unity shows up often, such as when players close ranks to deflect blame from one of their own committing domestic violence.

Pete Hegseth speaks with the president about the National Football League controversy.

Large numbers of players and staff from both teams knelt during the anthem while others stood with their arms interlocked. What will our team do? I kneel because I'm gonna stand against racism.

Historically protests in the field, arena or stadium are rare. This country, we're all American. The kneelers surely unified with the like-minded, but one presumes there were players who were embarrassed by the entire spectacle.

On December 7, 2014, Oregon Ducks basketball players Dwayne Benjamin and Jordan Bell held their hands up during the National Anthem at a game versus Mississippi. The white privilege of politicians, many fans, and even owners, can hopefully allow a reframing of the conversation and a reevaluation of equality in America.

Trump says there are plenty of other places where players can protest. It seems the freedom and opportunity they have in sports to make millions of dollars gives them the right to ignore the lives that can not no longer play sports or go to a game because they died for your ability to do so. As part of our basketball team, when you put the OR jersey on, it's a little different.

"I think there was also a sentiment. that the issues are being obscured and distorted by people with political agendas". I think high school football is different than professional football.

Said statement certainly reflected where the support or perhaps "lack of" Benjamin and Bell had within their team. They simply do not enjoy the same liberties and freedoms that Caucasian Americans do.

Despite Kaepernick's absence, scores of players from across the country have "taken a knee" during the anthem.

"We've talked about it as a team". It starts with us.

President Trump, tweeting on Monday morning, appeared pleased with the outcome.

Trump's comments on Friday led to the most protests yet during last Sunday's National Football League games. He says: "Jerry is a victor who knows how to get things done". What sets our nation apart from the rest of the world is our Constitution. Presidents come and go, but fans' relationships with their teams are forever.

Pulling a page from messages delivered by religious, social and even sports leaders in the Civil Rights Movement - such as Martin Luther King Jr. and National Basketball Association player Bill Russell - Sherman suggested if the protests make some people feel a little, or a lot, uncomfortable, then good.

"They say, 'we are in a situation where we have to do something.' I think they're afraid of their players, you want to know the truth. This country is far greater than any athlete, protestor, or sport".

I know we can chalk up the president's meddling to the all-purpose excuse - "It's Trump being Trump".