In the wake of the NFL announcing a new policy requiring players to stand for the national anthem, President Donald Trump has weighed in, suggesting that players who don’t stand for the anthem maybe “shouldn’t be in the country.”
Trump praised NFL owners for doing “the right thing” in an interview on his favorite show, Fox & Friends on Fox News. “You have to stand proudly for the National Anthem and the NFL owners did the right thing if that’s what they’ve done,” he said during a roundtable discussion on immigration policy. “You have to stand proudly for the National Anthem or you shouldn’t be playing. You shouldn’t be there. Maybe you shouldn’t be in the country.”
The new policy was announced Wednesday with players and personnel facing fines if they did not stand for the anthem, though each team may develop its own work rules regarding those who didn’t comply. The new policy does give players the option to remain in the locker room during the playing of the anthem if they don’t wish to comply.
“Well I think that’s good,” Trump told Fox News. “I don’t think people should be staying in locker rooms. But still I think it’s good. It’s something ideally could have been taken care of when it first started. That would have been a lot easier.”