The NFL will now punish players who refuse to stand for the National Anthem, but Donald Trump thinks those protesters should leave the country. Outraged voters clearly had a problem with this ‘fascism.’
The NFL took a knee to Donald Trump (credit to the New York Times editorial board) on May 23, implementing a policy that would punish teams if players don’t stand during the playing of the National Anthem. When told about the change, Donald, 71, turned a bit fascist. “You have to stand proudly for the national anthem, or you shouldn’t be playing, you shouldn’t be there. Maybe you shouldn’t be in the country,” he told Fox News’ Brian Kilmeade during a May 24 interview, per CNN “You have to stand proudly for the national anthem.”
The “Love It Or Leave It” argument is nothing new, especially from the conservative side of the political spectrum. However, hearing a sitting president – whose comments on immigration have caused many to call him out for being racist – suggesting that people utilizing their First Amendment rights need to leave the country is astounding. Many agreed and expressed their sheer disbelief and frustration online. “So the “P*ssy grabber in chief” thinks NFL players who kneel “maybe shouldn’t be in this country”. I think #traitors shouldn’t be in this country. @realDonaldTrump especially,” one twitter user said.
“[Trump’s] not advocating actually putting NFL players on buses and shipping them somewhere, “@TRCrev tweeted. “If you take that away though, the most generous way to interpret Trump on this is that, bluntly, it’s unamerican to protest in this way. (Less generously, ‘to protest in general’)”
The same conservatives who lean on the First Amendment as their reason for being allowed to say the n-word and apploud Trumps use of it are the same conservatives who wish to deny black #NFL players their right to free speech as they protest.
The hypocrisy is astounding.
— Rasheed Wesley (@leetmaster93) May 24, 2018
Bee-tee-dub Trump pressuring the NFL into practicing nationalism and restricting employee/player speech via threat of financial punishment is straight-up fascism, wholesale. It's the same shit that happens on the regular in China and Russia and we need to be vigilant of that shit
— 🎃 𝕿𝖍𝖊 𝖀𝖓𝖎𝖙𝖆𝖘𝖐𝖊𝖗𝖘 🎃 (@unitaskersmke) May 24, 2018
The new rules say that players who choose not to stand for the Anthem bust “stay in the locker room or in a similar location” until the Anthem is performed. Any players on the field “shall stand and show respect for the flag and anthem,” or their team(s) will be fined. “It was unfortunate that on-field protests created a false perception among many that thousands of NFL players were unpatriotic. This is not and was never the case,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement accompanying the rule change.
Remember, when Colin Kaepernick, 30, began his protests, he wasn’t protesting the flag or the anthem. He literally explained it was about how police disproportionately kill and harass black people and people of color. “I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color,” he famously said. However, Donald Trump turned Colin’s protest into a nationalistic talking point during campaign rallies, using the protest as a way to rile up supporter’s over a perceived lack of “patriotism.”
His comments about how NFL players should be fired for kneeling sparked massive protests across the league. With this new rule change, it appears NFL is okay if players choose to protest – just not in a place where Trump or anyone else can see it.