The Philadelphia Eagles will not be visiting the White House.
In the late hours Monday evening, Mr. Trump announced that the Super Bowl champion Eagles were not being cooperative with the idea of a celebration with the President, and therefore would not be visiting 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
The Philadelphia Eagles Football Team was invited to the White House. Unfortunately, only a small number of players decided to come, and we canceled the event. Staying in the Locker Room for the playing of our National Anthem is as disrespectful to our country as kneeling. Sorry!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 5, 2018
As a cherry on top, Mr. Trump cited the tiresome anthem issue as part of his disgust with the organization.
Ironically, not a single Eagles player kneeled for the anthem this season, nor did any of the players stay in the lockeroom for the ritual
The problem here goes beyond politics, or even police brutality, the Eagles players don’t appreciate the daily machinations of the President, and on that principle, are refusing to visit with him.
That’s on Trump.
The bigger problem here is the NFL.
The league office folded it’s tent when Trump leaned on them last fall, and then adopted a rule this spring that punishes teams with a fine in the event of an on field protest.
The NFL reached this decision without an official vote, which implies the input from the athletes was irrevelvant to the eventual ruling.
That ticked off a ton of players, and divided the country even further.
All of that could have been avoided if the NFL had stood up to the President.
They didn’t do that, and now we have Trump citing the anthem issue as a reason to dismiss a group of 53 players that do more for the community then the Trump organization does as a whole.
.@jaketapper: The President lies about the Eagles protesting during the Anthem. The White House accuses them of abandoning their fans. Ask yourself – when members of the team say the President seeks to divide us – are they wrong? https://t.co/tyR4BBJmsM pic.twitter.com/x4VCyQfg6T
— The Lead CNN (@TheLeadCNN) June 5, 2018
Malcolm Jenkins is a social advocate, Quarterback Carson Wentz builds houses in Hati, Chris Long donates untold sums of money to charity.
This is a group of dignified men, and they deserve better than this.
The NFL allowed the President to call the black players son’s of bitches, and get away with it, then they cowered to his demands.
If the NFL does not stand up for the Eagles in this situation, the division between the owners and the players will mutate to unfixable.
That’s a bad look with the collective bargaining agreement scheduled to expire in 2020.
It would be prudent for the NFL to stand up today, and support the players that made a decision based on their collective value systems.
The Eagles deserve the support of the league office.