On Friday, noted white supremacist and President of the United States Donald Trump took a shot at NFL players who kneel during the National Anthem, saying that they should be fired and calling them all “sons of bitches.”
This is in response to a peaceful protest started by former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who was fed up with the systemic racial injustice in the United States. It’s an ongoing battle, one that cost Kaepernick his job, and in the wake of our ignorant president’s hateful comments on Friday, more people than ever have spoken out in favor of the protests.
Following Goodell’s comments, Colin Kaepernick’s mother responded with a pretty great Tweet, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodel and NFL Players Association head DeMaurice Smith both issued statements and then San Francisco 49ers CEO Jed York issued his own statement.
What followed was a steady stream of NFL owners putting out statements ranging from passionate to uninspired, but at the very least, people continued to talk.
On Sunday morning, several players from both the Baltimore Ravens and Jacksonville Jaguars took a knee during the National Anthem, and then stood for God Save The Queen in London. The Pittsburgh Steelers announced they would not come out for the anthem, which itself seems like a fairly neutral move.
What followed was a very large outpouring of support from players around the league. Not everyone took a knee. Not everyone locked arms. Veteran and Steelers offensive lineman Alejandro Villanueva stood at the tunnel entrance. One national anthem singer took a knee as part of the performance.
Below I’m going to embed some of the captures we got from TV, and then some of the better Tweets on the matter. SB Nation is also tracking what they can here.
Mike Tomlin. No players behind him. pic.twitter.com/GYR0M4EyvR— Eric Edholm (@Eric_Edholm) September 24, 2017
Tom Brady links arms with Phillip Dorsett pic.twitter.com/N7gEzsiYwX— Joon Lee (@iamjoonlee) September 24, 2017
No Titans or Seahawks players on the field during the anthem:
#Browns Kizer in response to Trump says "I'm no son of bitch and "it's a tragedy" that we're still having these conversations— Mary Kay Cabot (@MaryKayCabot) September 24, 2017
Below are all of the official statements from team owners, CEOs, etc. If I missed one, please let me know.
Giants owners John Mara and Steve Tisch
Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie | Eagles players call for fans to join them
Packers president Mark Murphy
Lions owner Martha Ford | Jim Caldwell Statement (1 & 2)
Bears chairman George McCaskey
Falcons owner Arthur Blank | Arthur Blank to join players on sideline during anthem
Seahawks owner Paul Allen, president Peter McLoughlin and head coach Pete Carroll
49ers CEO Jed York
Rams owner Stan Kroenke
Bills owners Kim and Terry Pegula
Patriots chairman and CEO Robert Kraft
Dolphins owner Stephen Ross
Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti
Browns owners Dee and Jimmy Haslam
Texans owner Bob McNair
Jaguars owner Shad Khan
Colts owner Jim Irsay
Raiders owner Mark Davis | Raiders Marquette King stands outside White House
Broncos CEO Joe Ellis
Vikings owners Zygi and Mark Wilf
Jets CEO Christopher Johnson
Steelers president Art Rooney II
Chiefs CEO Clark Hunt
Buccaneers chairman Joel Glazer
Bengals, Cowboys, Saints, Cardinals and Washington have no statements that I am aware of.
On a personal note, I’d like to address the frequency of politics-related posts at Niners Nation. Fooch has covered the Colin Kaepernick protest incredibly well and I’ve mostly sat on the sidelines because of this. Fooch is away getting married and I wish him all the best, and am proud to continue writing about this and talking about this in his absence. It’s not about left vs. right or blue states vs. red states, it’s about hate vs. equality.
Donald Trump is a spiteful, hateful ball of literal human waste and is, in every definition of the phrase, a white supremacist. There are not just one or two things to point at as evidence of this, but literal dozens.
Nobody will be banned or suspended for disagreeing with me, but the moderators put in overtime dealing with some truly abhorrent statements last night and I thank them for their efforts. I believe in unifying, as the NFL has stated, but I’m not interested in unifying for the sake of ending the “divisive” protests. They were started for a reason and they’re not going away until something is changed.