Trump Warns He 'Won't Be Watching' NFL, US Soccer if There's Anthem Kneeling
President reaffirms stance on kneeling protests
President Donald Trump reaffirmed his stance on the athletes’ kneeling protests during the playing of the national anthem.
Trump reacted to the news regarding NFL players and the U.S. Soccer Federation and their positions on anthem kneeling.
U.S. Soccer recently repealed its policy, which requires players to stand during the playing of “The Star-Spangled Banner."
The U.S. Soccer reversal, and a video apology to black players by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, were a rpeosne to the death of George Floyd.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell makes statement on behalf of the league: “We were wrong” ... pic.twitter.com/NTWvRu9eNS— Backstage Sports (@BackstageSPT) June 8, 2020
Trump called Floyd's case “a very sad and tragic death,” but sat firmly with his opposition to anthem protests.
Trump retweeting a news story about U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., calling out U.S. Soccer on its policy reversal:
“I won’t be watching much anymore!”
I won’t be watching much anymore! https://t.co/s8nCg9EJSW— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 13, 2020
On Thursday, Gaetz had tweeted he would “rather the US not have a soccer team” anymore than to allow players to kneel during the anthem."
“You shouldn’t get to play under our flag as our national team if you won’t stand when it is raised,” Gaetz added.
I’d rather the US not have a soccer team than have a soccer team that won’t stand for the National Anthem.— Matt Gaetz (@mattgaetz) June 11, 2020
You shouldn’t get to play under our flag as our national team if you won’t stand when it is raised.
In 2017, U.S. Soccer had implemented its ban after omen’s team player Megan Rapinoe supported NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick by kneeling during the national anthem.
Last week, the federation said in a statement that its policy was “wrong and detracted from the important message of Black Lives Matter.”
“We have not done enough to listen – especially to our players – to understand and acknowledge the very real and meaningful experiences of Black and other minority communities in our country,” the statement continued.
“We apologize to our players – especially our Black players – staff, fans, and all who support eradicating racism.”
The U.S. Soccer Board of Directors voted yesterday to repeal Policy 604-1, which required our players to stand during the national anthem.— U.S. Soccer (@ussoccer) June 11, 2020
Black Lives Matter.
We can do more and we will. pic.twitter.com/wtyfkVZmsB
U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio also reposted:
“Let me get this straight,” Jordan wrote.
“UNITED STATES Soccer won’t stand for the UNITED STATES National Anthem?”
Let me get this straight, UNITED STATES Soccer won’t stand for the UNITED STATES National Anthem? https://t.co/VdxN6Agqxs— Rep. Jim Jordan (@Jim_Jordan) June 11, 2020
Trump later tweeted:
“And it looks like the NFL is heading in that direction also, but not with me watching!” the president wrote.
And it looks like the NFL is heading in that direction also, but not with me watching! https://t.co/aGfBaK7RNA— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 13, 2020
Trump last Sunday posted a speculative tweet after NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell issued an apology for the league not being receptive enough to black players’ concerns about racism.
“Could it be even remotely possible that in Roger Goodell’s rather interesting statement of peace and reconciliation, he was intimating that it would now be O.K. for the players to KNEEL, or not to stand, for the National Anthem, thereby disrespecting our Country & our Flag?” he wrote.
Could it be even remotely possible that in Roger Goodell’s rather interesting statement of peace and reconciliation, he was intimating that it would now be O.K. for the players to KNEEL, or not to stand, for the National Anthem, thereby disrespecting our Country & our Flag?— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 8, 2020
But at least two NFL stars signaled support for kneeling protests.
One fan wrote to Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield:
“Please tell Browns fans you’re not going to be kneeling this season.”
“Pull your head out. I absolutely am.”
Browns’ QB Baker Mayfield responding to a fan on IG: pic.twitter.com/JCgvE4EmlW— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) June 13, 2020