|The National Football League is now forbidding its players/employees from kneeling in protest of racist police violence during the national anthem. The NFL has created this policy without negotiating with the players' union and apparently without considering the First Amendment, but perhaps with an eye on the millions of dollars the Pentagon has quietly given it to celebrate militarism, and explicitly with an eye on pleasing bully-in-chief Donald Trump. Now more than ever, we need to encourage players to take a knee and protest -- and thank those who've already protested.
Donald Trump has been very understanding of violent racists, but has the ugliest words for African American athletes who nonviolently protest a racist criminal justice system.
In fact, he wants athletes fired for protesting, because they "disrespect our flag."
Trump's bombast has spurred even more athletes to speak out against racial injustice and against Trump.
Click here to thank those athletes who have taken a knee in protest -- or have joined in their defense.
The U.S. military has paid the National Football League many millions of public dollars to praise the military. Until 2009 NFL football teams were not even on the field yet when the national anthem was played at games. The militarized culture of permanent wars for "freedom" has been eroding our rights and our freedom of expression steadily for years now -- to the point that when several athletes protested police killings, they were accused of "disrespecting our troops."
Those athletes willing to protest racism and injustice are also taking a knee in defense of freedom of speech and freedom of thought.
Click here to tell them we are grateful.
We will deliver the petition with your signatures to the players union.
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-- The RootsAction.org Team
P.S. RootsAction is an independent online force endorsed by Jim Hightower, Barbara Ehrenreich, Cornel West, Daniel Ellsberg, Glenn Greenwald, Naomi Klein, Bill Fletcher Jr., Laura Flanders, former U.S. Senator James Abourezk, Frances Fox Piven, Lila Garrett, Phil Donahue, Sonali Kolhatkar, and many others.
> Benjamin Sachs: The NFL’s “take a knee” ban is flatly illegal
> Deadspin: Here's How NFL Teams Demonstrated During The National Anthem Today
> Vice: Stephen A. Smith Points Out NFL's Paid Patriotism Problem
> Dave Zirin: For the NFL, It Was Choose Your Side Sunday