Trump on National Football League protesters: 'Maybe you shouldn't be in the country'

President Donald Trump supported the National Football League owners rule on the US anthem

In an editorial titled The NFL kneels to Trump, the New York Times slammed the decision.

"And I will tell you one thing I know about NASCAR: They do indeed, Brian, stand for the playing of the national anthem, right?"

"So I ask my conservative friends who talk about this issue so much if they will also stand up for protesting #NFL players".

Trump said he objected to a provision in the new policy that will allow players to stay in the locker room while the song is played, but added: "Still, I think it's good".

'You have to stand proudly for the national anthem'.

Trump's rant last September, when he expressed a hope that NFL owners would say "Get that son of a bitch off the field" to protesting players, should have been easy for the league and its owners to deflect.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced Wednesday that all players and NFL team personnel "shall stand and show respect for the flag and the anthem" during the upcoming season. You shouldn't be playing, you shouldn't be there. The players not on board will have to stay in the locker room.

That is precisely the struggle prompting athletes to speak out - and yes, to kneel during the national anthem.

The NFL crafted this new policy in part to appease Trump and avoid any critical tweets from the White House. The owners seemed to address that concern by saying only teams would be fined for violations, not individual players. "I think it's the right thing to do". Ultimately, they caved. They gave Trump what he wanted, and this week they finally got those players off the field.

"I think the [American] people pushed it forward". "I brought it out. And the National Football League owners did the right thing if that's what they've done", said Trump.

The NFL Player's Association, which has supported the players' right to protest, issued a release on Wednesday stating it would review the new rule and challenge any aspect inconsistent with its collective bargaining agreement.

Despite the Trump administration's celebrations on Twitter, however, the rule may not be the end of kneeling protests. When the league's owners acted on principle and were anything but the squishy, invertebrate loafer-and-sport coat-wearing globules they have become. This argument could depend upon proof, though baseball arbitration involving John Rocker suggest that free speech is protected no matter how offensive.

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