President Donald Trump on Monday morning continued to bash NFL players who kneel or otherwise protest during the US national anthem before games. In a series of tweets, he pointed out that “many people booed” the protesting players, and he again denied the issue was race-related.
Trump again took to defending fans offended by many NFL players’ decision during the “Star Spangled Banner” to kneel or otherwise protest racial injustice in the US, describing those fans as people who “who demand respect for our Flag” in a tweet.
In a follow-up tweet, Trump again asserted his Sunday statement that his issue with NFL players’ protest had “nothing to do with race.”
In 14 NFL games on Sunday, dozens of NFL players responded to Trump’s criticism from earlier in the weekend by kneeling or otherwise protesting during the anthem. Before the game between the Seattle Seahawks and the Tennessee Titans, both teams stayed in their locker room to avoid the spectacle entirely. Elsewhere, while some players knelt, others stood with arms linked in a display of unity.
While Trump demanded on Monday that the NFL “must respect” the US’s flag and anthem, and on Friday said NFL owners should fire players who protest, he has not suggested any legislation or legal action, which would most likely restrict the players’ First Amendment right to acts of free speech.