NFL players kneel, link arms for national anthem in protest

Most NFL players on Sunday opted for a show of unity, locking arms ahead of their games after criticism from President Trump who slammed players opting to protest during the national anthem.

Trump forced the issue back into headlines last Friday when, speaking at a campaign rally for a Republican primary candidate in Alabama, he energized the largely white crowd by telling them NFL team owners should fire “sons of bitches” who protest during the national anthem.

In addition to the protests at Wembley, NFL teams across the league took some form of kneeling or locking arms.

In a brief interview Monday evening, Kelly told CNN he is “appalled” by what he sees as a lack of respect for the flag and national anthem.

“The specific NFL rule pertaining to the national anthem is found on pages A62-63 of the league rulebook”. “I said what millions of Americans were thinking”.

His son, Robert Michael Kelly, was killed in combat in Afghanistan in 2010.

Take a look at which players from which team took a stand, or didn’t, against Trump’s comments.

After the story appeared on CNN, the President criticized the network, calling it “fake news”.

At their media days Monday, Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal said Trump is “a clown” and Toronto Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan called the president a “so-called leader”.

As pre-game protests spread through the NFL on Sunday, Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin thought he would focus on football by keeping his team in the locker room while the national anthem played in Chicago. Ultra-rich National Football League owners supported a “pro-business” president who figured to make them richer, but a boycott would cost them money.

The protests started more than a year ago when former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick refused to stand during the anthem as a protest over police treatment of minorities.

In March, Trump bragged his Twitter account was helping keep Kaepernick unemployed.

Both Kraft and Brady have distanced themselves from Trump’s remarks. “And we would all just love to see a lot more equality and inclusion”. “But absolutely, we all feel discouraged just by the divisiveness right now”.

“I am deeply disappointed by the tone of the comments made by the President on Friday”, Kraft said.

“It’s unfortunate that the President made a decision to use his vast platform to make divisive and offensive statements about our players and the National Football League”.

White House chief of staff John Kelly, however, was not pleased with the resulting firestorm over the weekend, according to two administration officials.

Critics, including Trump, have said it is disrespectful. He drew widespread condemnation last month for saying “both sides” were at fault for violence between white supremacists and their opponents during clashes in Charlottesville, Virginia.

But acts of protest surrounding the anthem are more likely to be remembered.

Trump described McCain, who said he won’t support the latest GOP effort on health care, as a “disgrace” on the issue, the attendee said.

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders defended the President’s comments from the briefing room podium Monday, saying they were not meant to be divisive.

“It’s a flawless example of where the president gets it right”, said Christopher Ruddy, the CEO of Newsmax and a longtime Trump friend. The home team should ensure that the American flag is in good condition.

“We certainly respect the rights that people have”, Sanders said.

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