On Fox & Friends Thursday morning, he addressed the NFL's new guidelines cracking down on protests by repeating his insistence that black people shouldn't complain about racism, and that to do otherwise would be grounds for removal from the country.
"You shouldn't be there - maybe you shouldn't be in the country". The owner of the New York Jets also took a more conciliatory approach, promising not to punish any player who continues to protest against social injustice in full view of fans.
"We are bringing them out by the thousands as you know, we are setting records, this is a record that I don't even like talking about it because it's so ridiculous, they shouldn't even be in the country", he continued. Stand in any stadium on a Sunday afternoon while the anthem plays and see how many of those patriotic-to-the-death fans are chatting on cell phones or slathering their hot dogs in onions or shuffling to the bathroom. You have to stand proudly for the national anthem. "I think that's good", Trump said in the interview that taped Wednesday. The president's comments spurred a national conversation about patriotism and the nation's symbols and the use of peaceful protest. "I think it's the right thing to do".
So, what happens to a player who decides to keep kneeling during "The Star-Spangled Banner?"
The NFL Player's Association, which has supported the players' right to protest, issued a release on Wednesday stating it would review the new rule and challenge any aspect inconsistent with its collective bargaining agreement.
Johnson is the brother of Woody Johnson, who is now serving at the USA ambassador to the United Kingdom in the Trump administration.
"Management has chosen to quash the same freedom of speech that protects someone who wants to salute the flag in an effort to prevent someone who does not wish to do so", Smith wrote on Twitter.