Donald Trump won't watch NFL, soccer if players kneel during national anthem

John Healy
June 14, 2020 - 1:57 pm

President Donald Trump is once again going to battle with athletes who choose to kneel during the national anthem to protest racial injustice.

On Saturday, the president tweeted his reaction to comments Republican congressman Matt Gaetz of Florida and Jim Jordan of Ohio – both of whom criticized the United States Soccer Federation for lifting the requirement of players to stand during the anthem.

Gaetz had tweeted, “I’d rather the US not have a soccer team than have a soccer team that won’t stand for the National Anthem.. You shouldn’t get to play under our flag as our national team if you won’t stand when it’s raised.”

Trump replied, “I won’t be watching much anymore!”

Jordan also tweeted about U.S. Soccer, but that’s when Trump shifted his focus to the NFL.

“And it looks like the NFL is heading in that direction also, but not with me watching!” Trump tweeted.

It’s not the first time Trump has called for boycotting the NFL over peaceful protests against racism.

He did so in 2017, advocating for NFL owners to fire or suspend players who knelt during the national anthem and went as far as to calling a player who knelt a “son of a b---h” during a speech.

The NFL has continued to allow players to kneel during the anthem, although most players have stood in recent years while the first player to do so – Colin Kaepernick – remains out of the league.

Yet, that will likely change this upcoming season as many more players have shown their support for protests across the country speaking out against systemic racism, including Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield, who said he plans to kneel.

The NFL, in a video released by commissioner Roger Goodell, also publicly supported Black Lives Matter and admitted it was wrong not listening to players in the past.

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