Republicans in Tennessee are mad at a group of student-athletes for kneeling during the national anthem and want public universities and colleges to take action to prevent them from protesting.
The state senators have a selective concern about upholding American rights and values. Sen. Janice Bowling was quoted by the Tennessean as saying the First Amendment is “sacrosanct” and that she respected “heritage and history.” Sen. Mark Pody expressed concern about the protest happening and being paid for by the state.
But Bowling and Pody, along with three other Republican state senators in Tennessee, signed on to a Jan. 5 letter opposing President Joe Biden’s electoral victory. In their official capacities, with salaries paid for by the state, these five senators wrote the Tennessee federal delegation, relying on debunked claims of alleged voter fraud, and other similar rhetoric that in part fueled the attack on the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.
It seems that their respect for American institutions and people is dependent on whether they like the outcome.
So the state of Tennessee’s more upset that student athletes knelt in protest than they are about white supremacists using our campus as a recruitment site.
That is some bulllllllsh*t.
— #BREATHEAct (@_AshDashLee_) February 24, 2021
Head coach Jason Shay said that it was a decision made as a team and he’s glad it got people talking.
“This is the perfect time to continue to shed light on the racial issues facing our country,” Shay said in an interview last week.
In a letter to the leadership of several schools, Republican senators cited the anthem as a “symbol of pride for America” and ordered schools to prohibit such actions in the future.
The university system’s general counsel said that kneeling during the national anthem does not violate the student code of conduct. And the ACLU of Tennessee issued a statement calling any potential ban on student-athlete protest unconstitutional.
“The U.S. Supreme Court has long held that neither public schools nor legislators can force their definition of patriotism on students by requiring students to participate in compelled speech,” read the statement. “When public universities play the national anthem, they are opening a public forum for free expression under the First Amendment. Public universities cannot then turn around and censor students for expressing themselves by taking a knee.”
Republicans have a trifecta in Tennessee, with a veto-proof supermajority in both the House and Senate. Yet that didn’t stop members of the Tennessee Senate Democratic Caucus from releasing a statement supporting peaceful student protests.
“Student organizing on college campuses is a perfect reflection of the American values embedded in our First Amendment,” read the statement. “Rather than silencing the voices of students who are peacefully bringing attention to injustice in our country, we should all be working together to address the inequities that brought them to a knee.”
#ImWithKap: Black Twitter Blasts NFL For New National Anthem Policy
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Me, trying to find any NFL owners with common sense pic.twitter.com/tD1mp9Bql6— Jemele Hill (@jemelehill) May 23, 2018
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The irony of the NFL owners’ action is that *they have now hyper-politicized the anthem, for not just every black player and ally, but every potential anthem singer or Super Bowl halftime performer. That few minutes before a game will now look like a forced nationalistic display.— Joy-Ann Pro-Democracy & Masks Reid 😷 (@JoyAnnReid) May 23, 2018
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The NFL is 80% black. Imagine if they all sat out a Sunday or two...— Travon Free (@Travon) May 23, 2018
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I think the fact that the NFL has now decided to penalize or silence players who kneel is a perfect example of why they were kneeling to begin with.— Denizcan James (@MrFilmkritik) May 23, 2018
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#ImWithKap #ImWitheReid#ImWithKap #ImWitheReid#ImWithKap #ImWitheReid#ImWithKap #ImWitheReid#ImWithKap #ImWitheReid#ImWithKap #ImWitheReid#ImWithKap #ImWitheReid#ImWithKap #ImWitheReid#ImWithKap #ImWitheReid#ImWithKap #ImWitheReid#ImWithKap #ImWitheReid— Morgan J. Freeman (@mjfree) May 23, 2018
FUCK THE @NFL
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💡Remember, this entire series of events w/ the NFL has unfolded as result of one Black athlete making a personal decision not to stand for the anthem b/c he feels the nation is not living up to its claims of freedom & democracy. 2/— Bree Newsome Bass (@BreeNewsome) May 23, 2018
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Caps on: TO ALL NFL PLAYERS SLAVERY WAS ABOLISHED WITH THE 13TH AMENDMENT. THE FANS COME AND SEE YOU PLAY PAY TO SEE YOU PLAY YOU ALL NEED TO STRIKE. WHAT IS FOOTBALL WITH OUT ITS TEAM SHOWING UP ON THE FIELD TRUMP IS TRYING TO CONTROL THE NFL LIKE A SLAVE MASTER AND THATS WRONG— Mrs.Scales #Resist (@MrsScales1) May 23, 2018
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Today’s decision by the NFL is a win for racist bigots like you and Donald Trump. To suppress the players right to peacefully protest is unAmerican and it’s shameful that you are logging such a reprehensible, racist decision. You disgust me!— Bishop Talbert Swan (@TalbertSwan) May 23, 2018
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Welp might be time for me to join the NFL protest— Peter Rosenberg (@Rosenbergradio) May 23, 2018
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Chris Long says the NFL’s real reason for the national anthem policy is fear of a diminished bottom line and a fear of Donald Trump pic.twitter.com/UlwlncvyNe— SB Nation NFL (@SBNationNFL) May 23, 2018
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NBA gets its right every time, I don't understand how the NFL is still so behind— OG Lex ♓ (@_LexJanayy) May 23, 2018
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by this i mean the people who run the nfl, the people who are dedicated to policing players’ bodies & voices, the people who are complicit in police violence while the majority of the players in their industry are black— olivia gatwood (@oliviagatwood) May 23, 2018
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The new anthem policy states that players "shall stand and show respect for the flag and anthem." Issue with this: it implies that those that kneeled weren't respecting the flag. Furthering the false idea that the protests were about the flag. The protests are about injustice.— Taylor Rooks (@TaylorRooks) May 23, 2018
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White supremacy is a helluvah drug. Straight brainwashing. Look how easily they convinced a large portion of the white population that:— Samuel Sinyangwe (@samswey) May 23, 2018
1) the anthem should play every game
2) the anthem is about “troops”
3) kneeling is disrespecting “troops”
4) NFL policy should punish kneeling
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The NFL plantation owners passed a policy to make patriotism mandatory for their property. Either pay deference to symbol of white nationalism - which is what the anthem is, or pay a price. This is the answer to the "win" in Georgia and the message couldn't be clearer.— Ajamu Baraka (@ajamubaraka) May 23, 2018
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I fixed The NFL's/Roger Goodell's statement on their new National Anthem policy. pic.twitter.com/dNjDsSijjc— Luigi 🤌🏼 (@LuigiM227) May 23, 2018
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1. Coercing patriotism is unamerican.— John Scalzi (@scalzi) May 23, 2018
2. One wonders what the NFL's policy will be when its players, while standing, nevertheless protest during the anthem.
3. One might argue that the best way to show respect for a nation's symbols is by exercising rights the nation bestows. https://t.co/uGDHbmwb9E
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Every white #NFL player should refuse to play as long as the new anthem policy is in place. None of them will.— John Elrod II (@LOTNorm) May 23, 2018
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Endorsing the position of a snake-oil President* who continually attacks law enforcement for investigating him over players advocating against police brutality. #IllegalProcedure https://t.co/x9IAZqsSD8— Jeffrey Wright (@jfreewright) May 23, 2018
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This new NFL policy on the National Anthem is ridiculous.— Marc Lamont Hill (@marclamonthill) May 23, 2018
Republican Hypocrisy On Full Display As State Senators Demand Student-Athletes Stop Kneeling was originally published on newsone.com