NEW YORK (AP) - CORRECTION: CBS reporter clarifies on saying Kaepernick would stand for anthem, says they didn't discuss issue.
~ Where the Sun Will Never Set on Our liberty ~
Even before its feud over the national anthem with President Trump, the NFL Players Association wasn’t on the same political team as many of its fans, judging from its contributions to leftist advocacy groups.
Tax documents released by 2ndVote show the NFLPA donated $5,000 in 2015 to the Center for Community Change Action, a group active in the anti-Trump resistance and bankrolled by a host of liberal foundations, including top Democratic donor George Soros’s Foundation for Open Society.
A member of the AFL-CIO, the NFLPA also contributed in 2013 and 2015 to Working America, the AFL-CIO’s community affiliate, which Open Secrets said spent $1 million in 2016 to defeat Trump.
Working America has since mobilized against the Republican tax-cut framework, denouncing it as the “Trump tax scam.”
The NFLPA contributed $5,000 in 2014 to Jobs with Justice, another pro-union group backed by Soros, and $5,000 in 2013 to the progressive Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy.
The NFLPA donations from 2013, 2014 and 2015 were made before Mr. Trump was elected.
Other NFLPA charitable contributions went to a mix of groups supporting veterans, medical research and youth, including the Wounded Warrior Project, the Packard Center for ALS Research at Johns Hopkins, Active Minds, and the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Washington.
The Center for Community Change, whose 2015 annual report lists Planned Parenthood as a donor, plans to honor Democratic mega-donor Tom Steyer at its Oct. 12 awards dinner recognizing “heroes on the front lines of resistance.”
The CCCA has also received millions from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and Ford Foundation, the Washington Free Beacon reported.
“Clearly, ‘social activism’ by NFL players includes aligning with George Soros and other liberal organizations like Planned Parenthood in support of the left’s agenda,” said 2ndVote, a conservative watchdog group.
The NFLPA issued a statement in support of players who have protested racial injustice by sitting or taking a knee during the national anthem after Trump suggested in a Sept. 22 speech that team owners should fire those who refuse to stand.
“The comments were a slap in the face to the civil rights heroes of the past and present, soldiers who have spilled blood in countless wars to uphold the values of this great nation and American people of all races, ethnicities, genders and sexual orientations who seek civil progress as a means to make this country, and this world, a better place,” said Winston in a Sept. 23 statement.
An estimated 200 players sat or knelt during the national anthem the following weekend, while only about 50 did so last weekend.
“With television audiences declining every week and fans growing increasingly tired of the disrespect of the flag, the league and the players’ union would find it in their best interest to end the liberal activism and focus on football,” said 2ndVote. “After all, millions are finding it in their best interest not to watch the NFL at all.”
NFL ranked below the NBA! They did this to themselves.
Actions have consequences, as the NFL is now finding out.
The big guys need to be reminded from time to time.
Wait till you see what I'm gonna post next. I almost fell off the couch laughing when I read this. ;)))
They certainly do have consequences. Guess they all want to be out of a job or get giant paycuts. Those poor, crybaby millionaires.
CBS has “clarified” a report that indicated Colin Kaepernick said he would stand for the national anthem, saying that the issue was not, in fact, discussed:
That’s a pretty sharp departure from the initial report, which indicated Colin Kaepernicksaid he would stand for the national anthem if he were signed to an NFL team, according to CBS’s Jason La Canfora.
BREAKING: Quarterback Colin Kaepernick tells CBS he'll stand during national anthem if given chance to play football in NFL again.
— The Associated Press (@AP) October 8, 2017
Kaepernick, the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback, began kneeling during the national anthem in the 2016 preseason as a way to protest racial injustice and police brutality. He opted out of his 49ers contract after the season, although he was informed he would have been cut regardless.
Since then, he has not signed with an NFL team, though he has had workouts and at least passing interest from several organizations. However, dozens of quarterbacks, many with skills demonstrably weaker than K..., have been signed in his wake.
Let’s be clear here: no team is obligated to give Kaepernick a job, or even a tryout. He made his choice to speak out, and he’s suffering the employment consequences of that speech. But anyone who continues to insist that only “football” reasons are keeping Kaepernick off the field is fooling themselves.
Kaepernick has continued to pursue charitable endeavors even while off the field. And protests have exploded across the NFL, driven largely by critical September commentary from President Trump.
Kaepernick’s girlfriend took to Twitter after the AP’s initial report to refute the idea that he would stand:
T-shirt of the day
The NFL Commissioner said he was going to make all players stand. Now, he is backing off that and will not follow through because some players said if he does that they will quit! GOOD, QUIT! Go put your application in at McDonalds with Kapernick!
ANYTIME, ANY PLAYER IN UNIFORM, IN ANY SPORT disrespects the flag, He represents the owner and the team. If you disrespect my country and its symbols, I see no reason why I should respect you or support you with my taxes or ticket money. Federal tax exemptions should absolutely go away!
Bill O'ReillyVerified account @billoreilly Oct 12
The @NFL is trapped in a box of its own making, desperate to find some graceful way out. But there really is none.
President Trump declared victory this week. The commander-in-chief is essentially boasting that he has vanquished the nation's most powerful sports league, its owners, and its players. In other words, "Mission Accomplished."
And in fact, the president is correct, even if his end zone celebration is a bit unseemly. National Football League boss Roger Goodell, by all accounts, will soon demand that players stop kneeling or otherwise protesting during the National Anthem.
The NFL, trapped in a box of its own making, is desperate to find some graceful way out. But there really is none. If, as expected, the league orders all players to stand during the Anthem, one player has already predicted an "uproar," and many on the left will immediately scream "racism!"
We see it already. After Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said that his players will stand, the charming Al Sharpton said Jones has a "plantation mentality." The rapper Common went farther, accusing Jones of acting like a "slave owner." Even sports pundit Michael Wilbon, usually a reasonable guy, trotted out the "plantation" analogy.
Are these people serious? Unfortunately, they are. But they are kneeling on very shaky legal ground. Any attorney remotely familiar with First Amendment law will tell you that Jerry Jones is a private employer who can make and enforce the rules in his workplace, which just happens to be the stadium. Same for Roger Goodell and the NFL.
One player who has emerged as a very articulate spokesperson for the protesters is Eric Reid of the San Francisco 49ers. He asserts that players have a constitutional right to protest, which they do, but not in the arena.
Reid also opined on Vice President Mike Pence's decision to leave a game when players kneeled. "That's what systemic oppression looks like," Reid declared. That's bizarre enough, but Reid is severely misinformed when he says that President Trump called neo-Nazis "very fine people." No, Mr. Reid, he did not say that.
But while the law is with the owners, far more important are the fans and the American public. The NFL absolutely and totally misjudged their audience, apparently thinking that football fans would just sit back, have a beer, and endure some protests before watching their favorite gladiators give each other concussions.
But football fans tend to be patriotic types, the very people who voted for Donald Trump. And while most presidents would have let this sort itself out, President Trump used his bully pulpit to, well, bully. It's what he does. In this debate, as is so often the case, the president was firmly on the side of average Americans who despised these protests from the moment Colin Kaepernick took that first knee.
So what happens now? There will probably be some scattered protests this weekend, but that may be the end of it. The league has given very clear signals that it will soon ban the protests and demand that players follow league rules. Perhaps there will be some face-saving compromise under which protesting players can remain in the locker room during the National Anthem.
Players won't like it, especially radical types like the revolting Marcus Peters of the Kansas City Chiefs, who wouldn't even stand the day after the massacre in Las Vegas. Peters has since been caught on camera berating one of his assistant coaches, and he was suspended in college after throwing a tantrum on the sideline. Lovely guy, that Marcus Peters.
This entire episode could have been easily avoided if the San Francisco 49ers had simply told Colin Kaepernick to stop the nonsense on day one. But team CEO Jed York, heir to the family business, actually encouraged the malcontent quarterback. "I'm not going to tell the guys what to do," York sanctimoniously said, adding, "That's not my place." Well, who's place is it, Jed?
But Jed York was far from silent when President Trump criticized players for kneeling. He said the president's comments were "callous and offensive," and even employed that tedious and meaningless catchphrase "social justice." The San Francisco 49ers, by the way, are one of only three teams in the league with an 0 – 5 record. To quote President Bush, "Heckuva job, Yorkie."
This entire episode will end soon, probably with a whimper and not a bang. Some players will be angry, misguided executives like Jed York will demonize the president, race relations will be even more frayed, and millions of fans will be lost to the sport forever.
It just did not have to happen. Baseball, anyone?
Protests around professional sports have been nothing if not polarizing, especially considering President Donald Trump's persistent war of words with athletes who use the national anthem as a platform for activism, but player demonstrations may have fueled NFL support for legislative change at the federal level.
CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora reported two weeks ago that Roger Goodell has maintained a steady dialogue since this summer with many civic-minded players, including Malcolm Jenkins of the Eagles, Michael Bennett of the Seahawks and Anquan Boldin, who abruptly retired before the season. Goodell and the players have been working on ways that the NFL can assist them in their community endeavors, an effort that began well before the president made remarks critical of NFL players.
And, now, it appears those efforts have grown into formal league action.
ESPN's Jim Trotter reported via Twitter Monday that "the NFL is going to formally endorse criminal justice legislation" that surfaced early in October and has garnered support from several players "lobbying for" reformed sentencing guidelines. NFL Network's Judy Battista later confirmed via league spokesman Joe Lockhart that the NFL would do so.