CNN’s Jake Tapper opened The Lead today with President Trump‘s strong criticisms of NFL players kneeling in protest during the national anthem.
Tapper first said that people who support the protests and people who oppose them both have legitimate arguments to make. But the President ratcheted the debate up when he trashed kneeling players at a rally on Friday.
“Though the original protests are about race,” Tapper observed, “and the protesters were almost entirely black, and the team owners whom the President was calling upon to fire or suspended those players are almost entirely white, and the President chose to launch this campaign in front of an almost all-white crowd in Alabama––despite all that, the President insisted that this has nothing to do with race.”
He noted how President Trump tweeted months ago about peaceful protests being a “hallmark of our democracy” and wondered what happened since then.
And after playing a clip of former President Barack Obama talking about how people should listen to each other on this issue, Tapper said that this concept “feels today almost as radical a concept as trying to unite the country instead of looking for divisions to exploit in the nastiest manner possible.”
Watch above, via CNN.
[image via screengrab]
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