“YALL’s president”, as CNN political commentator Angela Raye so eloquently called him yesterday on twitter, stirred up a storm of backlash yesterday with his attempt to silence professional athletes by suggesting that owners fire players who have chosen to protest police brutality and injustice in this country by kneeling during the the National Anthem.
Here he is calling playing in the NFL a “privilege” and offering up his favorite catch phrase from his TV days “YOU’RE FIRED”….
NFL players around the league responded with tweets of their own voicing their displeasure with the president’s approach…
But here in Chicago, fans of a usually politically quiet Bears locker room were left wondering if the vibrations of counter actions against the president’s tweets would reach Soldier Field. I talked to Bears defensive tackle and newly-named team captain Akiem Hicks about his thoughts on the president’s tweets and what to expect from him and his fellow Bears teammates before kickoff of their game vs the Pittsburgh Steelers this afternoon.
Bears team captain Akiem Hicks on his initial thoughts after reading the president’s tweets suggesting owners fire National Anthem protesters:
“I think that it goes against a lot of the rights that we hold dear and the rights that we fight for as citizens in America. I don’t really appreciate it, but it’s where we’re at as a country right now, and it’s where our leadership is. I’m no activist and I’m not standing at the forefront of any movement, but I will say that you want to be respected and you want to be appreciated for what you do, and you want to be allowed the basic human rights that we all deserve.”
Hicks on if we should expect a response from the team during the National Anthem of this afternoon’s game vs the Pittsburgh Steelers:
“I think everybody should act accordingly and act how they feel they should act or do whatever they feel the need to do, but for me I have a business meeting on Sunday, 12 noon.”
Up to this point, no Bears player have publicly joined the league wide protest of the National Anthem. We’ll see if that changes this afternoon vs the Steelers.
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