NFL hoping to control anthem protests

Sanjay Ramchandani, Staff Writer

A national controversy that moved into hyperdrive following President Trump’s recent comments regarding NFL players who refuse to stand during the playing of the national anthem. Throughout the season, various players have been protesting during the anthem by kneeling, sitting, even staying in the locker room. The NFL had scheduled a meeting Tuesday with players and owners, but it seems the owners will be discussing the matter in private. This follows former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick filing a lawsuit against NFL owners.

The protests have drawn attention from hundreds of famous figures, most recently Eminem’s freestyle on the BET awards show fired towards Trump, racking up hundreds of thousands of retweets. Much of this conflict is being played out Twitter, with new shots being fired almost daily.

“If we all had the same interpretation of [the protests], nobody would have a problem about it,” senior Dylan O’Brien said.

NFL owners, including Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, have made their opinions clear. Jones said he would bench players who didn’t stand for the anthem.

“The NFL has placed itself in a precarious position,” journalism teacher Mark Schledorn said. “Right now they are losing fans due to the player protests, but if owners like Jones threaten their players with benching, who’s going want to play in Dallas the next time free agency comes around? At this point, it’s probably best that players plan a new strategy to call attention to their causes, one that is less likely to be politicized by being associated with our national anthem.”

These protests have drawn controversy around the start of each NFL game. Ultimately, it has seen NFL games viewing numbers drop this season, which is why the NFL is trying to act quickly to neutralize these protests.