President Donald Trump’s decision to rescind his White House invite to the Philadelphia Eagles isn’t a bother to the Super Bowl champions. What has upset many is the troubling language and reasoning used in Trump’s statement about the matter.
After reports indicated less than ten players planned to attend the traditional White House visit, Trump released a statement Monday evening (Jun. 4) disinviting the entire team over the national anthem protests. While that didn’t seem to be the case on the players’ end, Trump named dropped the military and shamed the players.
“The Philadelphia Eagles are unable to come to the White House with their full team to be celebrated tomorrow,” the statement reads.”They disagree with their President because he insists that they proudly stand for the National Anthem, hand on heart, in honor of the great men and women of our military and the people of our country. The Eagles wanted to send a smaller delegation, but the 1,000 fans planning to attend the event deserve better.”
Many players like Torrey Smith, a wide receiver who played for the Eagles during the 2017 season, condemned Trump’s language. Smith took to Twitter to call out Trump for “spreading the false narrative that players are anti-military.”
As it’s been said time and time again, the kneeling protests were in solidarity of those victimized by unlawful police practices, especially those of color.
As Colin Kaepernick stated, “I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color. To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.”
The former 49ers player’s life changed tremendously as he became an activist for the Black Lives Matter movement and has consistently donated money to fund programs for children in low-income neighborhoods. His actions were met with support by the military and (a year later) by fellow NFL players as they took a knee during the national anthem.
The NFL recently issued new rules towards the act of protesting, which were met with a big co-sign by Trump.
When it comes to the visit, it was previously reported that Eagles players Brandon Graham, Malcolm Jenkins, Chris Long and Smith wouldn’t attend the ceremony.
“I’m about creating positive change in the communities that I come from whether it be Philadelphia, New Jersey, Ohio, Louisiana or this entire country,” Jenkins shared after their Super Bowl win. “I want to see changes in our criminal justice system. I want to see us push for [economic] and educational advancement in communities of color and low-income communities.”
Smith went on to accuse Trump of showcasing cowardly behavior by pinning the Eagles ban on the national anthem.
The team released a statement shortly after Trump’s, highlighting their last season.
— Philadelphia Eagles (@Eagles) June 5, 2018
Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney, held a bit of shade in his statement. Kenney called Trump “a fragile egomaniac obsessed with crowd size and afraid of the embarrassment of throwing a party to which no one wants to attend.”
Philly mayor Jim Kenney's statement is pointed.
After President Trump disinvited the #Eagles to the White House, Kenney calls him "a fragile egomaniac obsessed with crowd size and afraid of the embarrassment of throwing a party to which no one wants to attend." pic.twitter.com/90pHhIR4SU
— Dave Zangaro (@DZangaroNBCS) June 5, 2018
Nonetheless, 1000 fans will still be in attendance at the White House later today.