Former NFL star Emmitt Smith is standing by players who kneel during the national anthem to protest social injustices, something that he has faced on more than one occasion.
“I have been a victim of it. It’s not like I am talking because something happened to George Floyd. Something happened to me more than one time, a couple of times it happened right here in Dallas.” He continued, “I’m talking from experience, not something I read in a book and saw on CNN.”
Smith is no stranger to taking a knee in protest, as he famously did it back in 2000 at Texas Stadium to defend the Cowboys’ midfield logo. The 51-year-old says that he wishes he had taken a knee in protest of the anthem back then.
When asked if he would kneel in protest today, the former Cowboy replied, “Why not? If I can defend the star, I definitely can defend the right for everybody to have equal justice.”
Smith also called out Cowboys owner Jerry Jones who has been against kneeling. In 2018, he vowed that his players would always stand for the anthem with a “toe on the line.”
“Jerry needs to cut it out. He needs to cut it out. Don’t distort the message because of the flag. It is bigger than the flag.” Smith went on to add, “What is the difference between injustice and bullying? You see somebody get bullied, are you supposed to keep walking down the street? No. You support that peace, but you won’t support justice for people getting killed in the streets for no apparent reason.”