“Saying NFL players are protesting the flag is like saying Rosa Parks was protesting bus transportation,” the opening caption reads.
The 60-second clip, a collaboration with the media company ATTN:, reminds critics that “these protests have always been about police brutality and systemic injustice in America.”
The video features Eric Reid, Marquise Goodwin and Dontae Johnson of the San Francisco 49ers declaring their support for Colin Kaepernick, the ex-49ers quarterback who originated the protests last season by kneeling during “The Star-Spangled Banner.” He remains unsigned this season, arousing suspicion that the league is blackballing him, despite denials of that by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.
Rashad Robinson, Color of Change’s executive director, said in a release that Kaepernick exhibited “the very best of what has moved this country forward — a willingness to stand up for justice. He has put his career on the line to promote social justice for people of color, calling out systemic inequalities that go beyond the NFL. This is a model of public service that we should be lifting up, not silencing. History will tell the story of those who stood silent in the face of injustice and those who aided it by seeking to silence the truth tellers.”
While President Donald Trump is the most prominent figure to condemn the players, negative reactions have included fans booing in some stadiums, the burning of team apparel and season tickets, and two New Orleans Saints players being disinvited as grand marshals for a Mardi Gras parade.
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