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'Patriotism and nationalism are different': National Football League players react to new anthem policy

Woody: This is the land of the free and the home of the brave, something the NFL seems to have forgotten

"And most particularly, (we considered) the members of our military and veterans communities who we've heard a lot from over the a year ago about what it means to respect the flag and the national anthem".

"I say "disgusting" because of our First Amendment rights, " Marshall said. That's why we live in the land of the free and the home of the fearless, something the National Football League seems to have forgotten. That's not how things should work, in my opinion.

"I don't think people should be staying in locker rooms, but still I think it's good", he said, adding, "You have to stand proudly for the national anthem". Many responded to the NFL's new policy by criticizing the league for failing to protect freedom of speech.

The movement to protest police brutality and racial injustice by kneeling during the national anthem first started in 2016 with former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick. It's kind of what's wrong with our country right now. "We have freedom of speech, right?"

Baldwin said he believed the protests would've died out on their own during the upcoming season, but said the National Football League "really missed it with a policy that could reignite demonstrations".

"The word that comes to my mind, and I don't care who doesn't like me using it, is 'plantation, ' " Wilbon said at the time.

"But for him to say that anybody who doesn't follow his viewpoints, or his constituents' viewpoints, should be kicked out of the country?" It's not what this country is founded upon. "So it's ironic to me that President of the United States is contradicting what our country was really built on". "This is what we do, just football". "I'm really proud of our players around the league for really being community leaders, being outspoken for good, for the change we need".

The NFL has put itself in a position where it can be seen as trying to placate a president who is widely disliked among a key demographic for the league, namely people who are going to live for a while.

Since the new policy is a change in the terms and conditions of employment that was not collectively bargained, any attempts to fine individual players would surely be opposed by the union. "I think there will be some backlash from their decision".

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell aid in a statement that "we believe today's decision will keep our focus on the game and the extraordinary athletes who play it". Until the league revises what I see as an undeniably racist policy, black fans should continue our boycott. But I also have no problem with players peacefully demonstrating during the anthem, because I know that is also honoring what my uncle gave his life for -Liberty. They weren't disrespecting the flag or the military. Your whole team is out there, and you come running out like, 'Oh, he's the guy.' Who wants to go through that? We didn't have an issue previous year.

If only we could ask the founder of the university, Thomas Jefferson, author of the Declaration of Independence and someone who might have declined to stand when "God Save the Queen" was played, what he would tweet about all this. He said he had mixed emotions when he saw the new rule announced Wednesday, but he doesn't agree with it.