In 2016, NFL player Colin Kaepernick began to kneel during the national anthem at football games to raise awareness about police brutality and oppression against African Americans and people of color.
During a rally in Alabama back in 2017, #DonaldTrump, in response, referred to Kaepernick and players, who also chose to kneel in protest, a “son of a bitch.”
”Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a bitch off the field right now,” Trump stated. “Out! He’s fired. He’s fired.”
After the protests during the 2016 season and Trump’s public criticism, Kaepernick was blackballed from the league; he hasn’t had a job since. But, earlier this month, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell released a video-statement admitting that league’s response to Kaepernick’s protest was wrong.
Now, as a result, NBA head coach #GreggPopovich is calling Goodell out over his initial handling of Kaep’s movement, revealing that when Trump made his remarks disapproving kneeling in 2017, Goodell became intimidated.
“[Roger] got intimidated when Trump jumped on the kneeling [and] he folded,” Popovich revealed during an interview with the New York Times.
He continued, calling the American flag “irrelevant.”
“A smart man is running the NFL, and he didn’t understand the difference between the flag and what makes the country great— all the people who fought to allow [Colin] Kaepernick to have the right to kneel for justice,” Popovich stated. “The flag is irrelevant. It’s just a symbol that people glom onto for political reasons.”