President Donald Trump doubled down on his criticism of NFL and NBA players who kneel during the national anthem — encouraging sports fans to boycott upcoming games.
Trump continued his ongoing spat with the sports world on Twitter as widespread protests were expected at more than a dozen NFL games slated for Sunday.
That came after Trump made a stump speech in Alabama Friday for sitting Republican Sen. Luther Strange. At the rally, Trump criticized football players for kneeling during the national anthem rather than standing — a movement that started with former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who frequently took a knee during the anthem last year to protest police treatment of African Americans.
“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, out, he’s fired. He’s fired!” Trump said at the rally.
Since then, various NFL owners have also come out in defense of their teams and players. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell also responded to Trump’s attack, saying, “Divisive comments like these demonstrate an unfortunate lack of respect for the NFL, our great game, and all our players.”
On Saturday, Trump announced on Twitter that he was rescinding NBA star Stephen Curry’s White House invitation. That came after Curry, of the Golden State Warriors, said he’d prefer not to go to the White House because he opposed the administration’s views.