National Football League could require standing for anthem

Vice President Mike Pence in Las Vegas

And if they decide that they want to silence these individual players, if they decide they want to implement a rule that states: 'You must stand for the national anthem, you must come out that tunnel, out of that locker room, be on the sidelines and stand for the national anthem, ' it's perfectly within their right to do it as a private industry and a private employer.

Vice President Mike Pence walked out of a Indianapolis Colts-San Francisco 49ers game on Sunday after several 49ers took a knee during the anthem.

The NFL said on Wednesday that there is "no change" in policy regarding the national anthem - one day after the league's commissioner said "everyone" should stand during the ceremony. The NFL says these issues will be discussed at the owners meeting next week. In response to a Tuesday report that National Football League commissioner Roger Goodell will address the ongoing protests directly with owners, Trump took to Twitter early Wednesday morning.

In a letter sent to team chief executives and presidents, Goodell says the league has developed a plan to be presented at next week's league meetings with the goal being consistency on a league level and work on the team level in addressing the ongoing controversy.

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The national anthem protest movement was launched by the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick last fall, who began to kneel during the anthem before his team's games, and later spread throughout the NFL and other sports leagues in the US.

"We also care deeply about our players and respect their opinions and concerns about critical social issues", the letter continued. Commissioner Roger Goodell has written to team owners saying players "should" stand. "We need to move past this controversy, and we want to do that together with our players".

"Commentary this morning about the Commissioner's position on the Anthem is not accurate", the National Football League said in its statement. Pence said: "I don't think it's too much to ask NFL players to respect the Flag and our National Anthem".

"I am proud of him and @SecondLady Karen", added Trump. Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick started the trend when he knelt during the national anthem a year ago.

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