"Divisive comments like these demonstrate an unfortunate lack of respect for the NFL."
Following President Donald Trump’s fiery remarks on NFL players who choose to kneel during the national anthem, his comments referring to said players as “sons of bitches” who should be fired was met with a world of backlash. One of the more prominent voices to speak out against the proclamation was NFL commissioner Roger Goodell who issued a statement describing the rant as “divisive.”
"The NFL and our players are at our best when we help create a sense of unity in our country and our culture," Goodell said in the statement. "There is no better example than the amazing response from our clubs and players to the terrible natural disasters we've experienced over the last month. Divisive comments like these demonstrate an unfortunate lack of respect for the NFL, our great game and all of our players, and a failure to understand the overwhelming force for good our clubs and players represent in our communities."
It was on Friday that President Trump dedicated a portion of his speech at a rally for United States Senate candidate Luther Strange to touch on the subject, criticizing the NFL for making strides toward less violent games and urging them to fire players like Colin Kaepernick who kneel during the National Anthem in a form of protest, and advising fans to walk out on games where this behavior is displayed.
"Wouldn't you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, 'Get that son of a b---- off the field right now. Out. He's fired. He's fired!" he said.
Following Commisioner Goodell’s statement, Trump returned to Twitter to respond and double down on his initial sentiments.
"Roger Goodell of NFL just put out a statement trying to justify the total disrespect certain players show to our country. Tell them to stand!"
Roger Goodell of NFL just put out a statement trying to justify the total disrespect certain players show to our country.Tell them to stand!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 23, 2017
As the weekend continues its run, we’re sure that we’ll be hearing a lot more from other prominent figures speaking out against POTUS’ speech on Friday. We’ll be keeping an eye out for further developments on the situation.