The controversy over some football players’ decision to take a knee to demonstrate on behalf of African Americans during the national anthem at football games is continuing to unfold. One Fox News crew decided upon an interesting way of addressing these peaceful protests — by just about completely ignoring them during a live broadcast.
During Fox coverage of the national anthem at this Sunday’s NFL game between the Miami Dolphins and the New Orleans Saints, three Miami Dolphins players can be seen taking a knee during the anthem, but the broadcast did not focus upon them. The broadcast did highlight players who were standing up at attention, and some on the Saints team who were locking arms rather than putting their hands over their hearts.
The broadcast even zoomed in on a player who was standing up with his head in his hands during the anthem. However, they did not do the same in the case of the players who took a knee during the anthem.
In an effort to participate in the protest while trying to deflect allegations of being disrespectful of the anthem, some Saints players kneeled before the national anthem — as the Dallas Cowboys did at a recent game — and then stood as it was sung.
Those football players who have chosen this form of protest have, as mentioned, done so in an effort to stick up for African Americans. The president has taken extreme issue with this, asserting that the “sons of bitches” who sit out the anthem should be fired.
Those players who remained on a knee during the national anthem during Sunday’s Saints-Dolphins game — which was in London — were, as reported by The Washington Post, Dolphins tight end Julius Thomas, safety Michael Thomas and wide receiver Kenny Stills.
According to this same report from The Washington Post, it’s not even customary to show the anthem at all during most NFL broadcasts, and Fox Sports President Eric Shanks said recently that his company would “pay attention to events” in determining what to air and what not to air.
The president has continued to rail against the NFL on Twitter in the days since his initial “sons of bitches” comment, writing Saturday night on Twitter that it is “very important that NFL players STAND tomorrow, and always, for the playing of our National Anthem.”
Check out an image of the kneeling players, as seen on a Fox broadcast, below. The broadcast never zoomed in beyond what’s shown.
A closer image, taken by a still photographer, is below.