The ‘take a knee’ protest is getting renewed attention after President Trump tweeted Friday morning regarding NFL players who joined the protest during Thursday’s games. Known as the United States National Anthem protests, take a knee protests began in 2016, when San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick protested racial inequality and police brutality by sitting, then kneeling during the National Anthem that is played before the start of games. Controversy has since ensued as to whether the protests are an example of free speech or the ultimate disrespect of the country.
President Trump shared two tweets following protests by Miami Dolphins Kenny Stills, Robert Quinn, and Albert Wilson.
De’Vante Bausby, Malcolm Jenkins, Michael Bennett, and Chris Long of the Philadelphia Eagles also took part in protests.
The President did not hold back in tweeting his displeasure with the NFL members.
The NFL players are at it again – taking a knee when they should be standing proudly for the National Anthem. Numerous players, from different teams, wanted to show their “outrage” at something that most of them are unable to define. They make a fortune doing what they love……
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 10, 2018
At approximately 8 a.m. ET, President Trump pointed out that the players who are protesting racial inequality and police brutality enjoy a lucrative living playing football in this country. He pointed out that he believes because football is a game that they not only love but is responsible for their personal prosperity, they shouldn’t protest but embrace the flag.
The tweet drew tens of thousands of comments and likes from people who both shared and disagreed with President Trump’s views.
Many of the comments that disagreed with President Trump’s tweets pointed to the First Amendment and free speech.
Though President Trump has a valid point regarding NFL players earning a substantial income, there are many cases that show even six-figure-earning NFL players of a minority background are sometimes subjected to questionable interactions with police and experience racial inequality.
At this point, it is unclear how many NFL players have personally experienced police brutality, though there are many cases to be found in mainstream media.
The Reverend Jesse Jackson Sr. issued a public statement saying President Trump misinterprets the meaning of the protests.
In a public release to Insight News, Reverend Jackson stated the following.
“Kneeling before the flag in silent, nonviolent protest is not disrespectful to the “Stars and Stripes.” In fact, it’s just the opposite. It is a sign of deference and respect, a call to honor what the flag is truly supposed to represent.”Advertisement
What do you think about the take a knee and National Anthem protests? Do you think they are a peaceful and practical way to implement social justice or do you agree with President Trump that they are being conducted in a disrespectful manner?