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Posted under: Sports News

NFL Players Bunk Protest Ban, Take A Knee And Throw Up The Black Power First During Preseason Game

Players continued to exercise their First Amendment rights despite pushback from the NFL.

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Despite the NFL making it clear the organization is not here for peaceful protesting from players during the national anthem, players made it even more crystal they won't be stopping their right to do so anytime soon.

The NFL tried it back in May with the announcement of policies against the #TakeAKnee movement during the 2018-2019 season. 

"This season, all league and team personnel shall stand and show respect for the flag and the anthem. Personnel who choose not to stand for the anthem may stay in the locker room until after the anthem has been performed," the official NFL statement read. "We believe today's decision will keep our focus on the game and the extraordinary athletes who play it — and on our fans who enjoy it."

After continuous backlash, the NFL announced it would be temporarily suspending the controversial policies. If the league thought the plan would send a message to players, the preseason kickoff on Thursday, August 9, seemed to imply the exact opposite. 

According to CNN, players throughout the league showcased their solidarity by either continuing to take a knee, raise a fist, or refuse to hit the field as the anthem played. 

Started in 2016 by Colin Kaepernick, the #TakeAKnee movement was meant to create awareness for social and racial injustices in America. Instead, many including 45, missed the whole point and morphed it into an issue of protesting the anthem. Taking a knee has seemingly left Kaepernick and his former teammate Eric Reid blackballed by the league. However, those warning shots will not stop the show. 

Players for the defending Superbowl champs, the Philadelphia Eagles, made their voices heard without saying a word. Captain Malcolm Jenkins and cornerback De'Vante Bausby raised their fists during the anthem, according to CNN. Defensive end Michael Bennett walked out of the tunnel Thursday during the song and headed straight for the bench.




The protests didn't stop in the city of brotherly love. Down in Miami, wide receivers Kenny Stills and Albert Wilson reportedly knelt during the anthem while defensive end Robert Quinn, like Jenkins, raised his fist. Jacksonville Jaguars players Jalen Ramsey, Telvin Smith, Leonard Fournette and T.J. Yeldon avoided the field during the anthem, according to ESPN.


Donald Trump would be remiss if he didn't throw in his two cents about the players' choice to act on their rights:




As long as injustices in this country prevail, so will peaceful protesting.

Now, check these out:

NFL Player Who Couldn't Give A Damn About No Fine, Says He'll Continue To Protest On The Field During The Anthem

Jemele Hill Calls Out The NFL's Soft Treatment Of Criminals: 'You Should Feel Very Embarrassed By That'

Colin Kaepernick Hits Back At Blackballing NFL Owners In 5-Word Instagram Caption

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Malinda is a staff writer for Blavity, freelance content creator, and executive assistant residing in Cleveland, OH. As a proud graduate of Mississippi Valley State University, she loves all things HBCU. In her free time she enjoys being a bomb plant mom, self-care, bottomless mimosas and painting. Contact by email: malindajny@gmail.com