Trump Says That NFL Players Who Kneel "Shouldn't Be In The Country"

Blanche Robertson
May 25, 2018

United States football players who refuse to stand for the national anthem maybe "shouldn't be in the country", President Donald Trump said on Thursday. "Or do they think owners can make stadiums conservative "safe spaces" where even silent protest is banned?"

The NFL announced a new anthem policy Wednesday - without consulting players - that allows players to stay in locker rooms during the song, but if they are on the field, they must stand.

"You have to stand proudly for the national anthem, or you shouldn't be playing", the president said in response to a question about the NFL owners' vote to approve a national anthem rule that will request players stay in the locker room if they will not stand for the anthem. "And you have to take the players' feelings and views into account, as well". "They'll find a way to get you up out of there".

"This season, all league and team personnel shall stand and show respect for the flag and the anthem".

Trump said: 'We do have $1.6billion, we started the wall.

Despite the Trump administration's celebrations on Twitter, however, the rule may not be the end of kneeling protests. A bit later he offered a suggestion to networks broadcasting football games in the future - a running tally of how many players aren't on the field during the anthem: "I'll bet there'll be a box [on the screen] saying so many people were on the sidelines [standing] and so many people were missing".

Commentary: "Throw the ungrateful protesters out of the country" is a red-meat take that'll play well with some in the president's base, but it's one that doesn't even stand up to an elementary-school-level understanding of American freedoms. "This country is very smart".

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Players began kneeling during the anthem in 2016 as a means of protesting social injustice in the U.S.

National Football League stars joined Kaepernick later that season, seizing the opportunity during the "Star-Spangled Banner" to kneel and bring attention to social justice issues.

The New York Jets are the only team in the league to pubilcy back its players.

Do you like the new policy? "I brought it out". The president's words inflamed the protest controversy last season, and this time around, they're likely to have the same effect.

That decision was immediately slammed by the NFL Players' Association.

Anyone who denies that police violence against African-Americans is a problem in this country would be lying... like the President.

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