Oakland Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch sent a message to President Donald Trump on Sunday when he wore a T-shirt that said “Everybody vs. Trump.”
Lynch wore the shirt while arriving at Sunday’s game against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field.
Beast mode went there…. pic.twitter.com/UdeILDolym
— Damien Woody (@damienwoody) October 1, 2017
During the playing of the national anthem, Oakland Raiders staffers covered up Lynch as he sat down. Lynch could only be seen by aerial view.
Lynch’s decision to wear the T-shirt comes just one week after President Trump told players to stand for the national anthem; the following days, hundreds of NFL football players took a knee or sat during the anthem in protest.
The kneeling during the national anthem in protest began last year, when football player Colin Kaepernick took a knee to protest what he believes to be problems in America, namely police brutality and black inequality. Kaepernick was not signed by an NFL team this year.
The protests took on a renewed vigor this weekend after President Trump called on players to stand and show respect to the anthem and flag. Trump referred to a player who kneels as “a son of a b–ch,” and said they should be fired. Many players kneeled during the national anthem during football games on Sunday.
The comments that drew the ire of the NFL players came during a stump speech in Alabama that Trump gave at the end of September.
Trump said: “We are proud of our country. We respect our flag… Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘get that son of a b–ch off the field right now. He is fired. He’s fired!’”
“That’s a total disrespect of our heritage. That’s a total disrespect of everything we stand for,” Trump said, adding that while we have many freedoms, it’s still “totally disrespectful.”
If a fan sees a player take a knee, the fan should “leave the stadium… Pick up and leave,” Trump had also said, adding that fans wouldn’t be missing out.
Trump has since said that the NFL should implement a rule against players kneeling during the country’s anthem.
The NFL Player’s Association executive director, DeMaurice Smith, has said the union will “not back down” and continue to defend the constitutional rights of players.
And Roger Goodell, commissioner of the League, has said the President’s comments “demonstrate an unfortunate lack of respect for the NFL, our great game and all of our players, and a failure to understand the overwhelming force for good our clubs and players represent in our communities.”