President Donald Trump commented on the recent NFL protests of the national anthem. On Twitter, the president voiced his displeasure and criticized the league.
“‘Players take knee, raise fist, stay in locker room, during National Anthem.’ No thanks, tell them to ‘protest’ some other time!” Trump tweeted.
At a campaign rally over the weekend in Henderson, Nevada, Trump also called out the league. He described football games as “boring.”
“Football’s boring as hell. It’s just not the same, right?” Trump said. He continued, saying people once asked for events not to be scheduled during games. “Now, they say, ‘can you possibly do it during a football game?'”
During Week 1, the NFL held demonstrations for social injustices and to end police misconduct. Several teams including the Houston Texans protested the national anthem by remaining in the locker room. Some players knelt or raised their fists in silent protests. Several players wore emblems that featured the names of victims of violence. Before every game, the league played “Lift Every Voice and Sing”. The song has become known as the black national anthem.
Donald Trump has criticized national anthem protests since 2016.
Former quarterback Colin Kaepernick started the kneeling protest in 2016. He recently called out the NFL for the demonstrations, calling them “propaganda”. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell expressed regret that the league didn’t support Kaepernick’s protests. Since the death of George Floyd, the NFL pledged $250 million to address social issues, according to The Washington Post.
Trump has been against the national anthem protests since they started. According to USA TODAY, the president urged team owners to fire players that protested in 2017. Trump’s son Eric also recently criticized the league’s protests on Twitter, calling football “dead.”
“President Trump stands with our brave soldiers and patriots who proudly stand for our national anthem and great flag, not those who choose to disrespect it by kneeling or elect to needlessly cover this demonstration — and the American people agree with him,” a White House spokesman Judd Deere told The Washington Post.