September 23, 2017
A handful of current and former professional athletes for Philadelphia's teams are speaking out against President Donald Trump's comments about Golden States Warriors star Steph Curry and NFL players who protest the national anthem.
At a political rally in Alabama on Friday, Trump went after football players, such as quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who kneel during the national anthem before games. Per the Associated Press:
"That's a total disrespect of our heritage. That's a total disrespect of everything that we stand for," Trump said, encouraging owners to act.
"Wouldn't you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, you'd say, 'Get that son of a bitch off the field right now. Out! He's fired," Trump said to loud applause.
If a player wants the privilege of making millions of dollars in the NFL,or other leagues, he or she should not be allowed to disrespect....— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 23, 2017
...our Great American Flag (or Country) and should stand for the National Anthem. If not, YOU'RE FIRED. Find something else to do!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 23, 2017
On Saturday, Trump turned his anger toward Curry, rescinding an invitation to the White House after the two-time MVP said he didn't want to visit for the traditional trip made by NBA championship teams, .
Going to the White House is considered a great honor for a championship team.Stephen Curry is hesitating,therefore invitation is withdrawn!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 23, 2017
The Warriors, NFL commissioner Roger Goodall and NBA superstar LeBron James were among those that responded to Trump's comments.
Statement from the Golden State Warriors: pic.twitter.com/6kk6ofdu9X— Warriors PR (@WarriorsPR) September 23, 2017
U bum @StephenCurry30 already said he ain't going! So therefore ain't no invite. Going to White House was a great honor until you showed up!— LeBron James (@KingJames) September 23, 2017
Eagles wide receiver Torrey Smith, who's often outspoken about his political views on Twitter, called Trump "divisive" and quote tweeted the president, saying he said "stupid things."
It's amazing that the most divisive person in this entire country is the President of the United States...he says whatever he wants— Torrey Smith (@TorreySmithWR) September 23, 2017
Patriotism goes beyond a flag and an anthem— Torrey Smith (@TorreySmithWR) September 23, 2017
If a person wants the privilege of being the POTUS he must not disrespect every minority group in the country and say stupid things 🤷🏿♂️ https://t.co/9dtqq2QnBW— Torrey Smith (@TorreySmithWR) September 23, 2017
Former Eagle Connor Barwin said the freedom to express one's opinions needs to be respected.
"If our president doesn't understand this most important truth, it's even more important that we do," Barwin wrote on Twitter.
Sixers player Ben Simmons made his feelings about the president known by retweeting LeBron's tweet calling Trump a "bum" and Philly native Kobe Bryant's tweet saying Trump's name alone causes "division and anger."
A #POTUS whose name alone creates division and anger. Whose words inspire dissension and hatred can't possibly "Make America Great Again"— Kobe Bryant (@kobebryant) September 23, 2017