Trump launches national anthem petition in latest swipe at NFL

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Satellite provider DirecTV recently started offering refunds to customers who had purchased the NFL Direct Ticket package but were offended by recent protests by players by kneeling during the National Anthem.

Owners, players and commissioner Roger Goodell met in Manhattan this week to address the national anthem protests that have drawn the ire of Trump, who has demanded that the NFL require players to stand for the anthem.

This new attack, the american president against the National Football League comes after a meeting between the owners of the clubs and the player representatives on Tuesday and Wednesday in NY. Existing NFL policy says players "should" stand for the anthem but does not explicitly make it mandatory.

In contrast to Trump, who has scorned any player who protests as a "son of a bitch" who should face suspension, Goodell praised the athletes as political activists trying to improve their communities. "We agreed that these are common issues and pledged to meet again to continue this work together".

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"It is important for us to honor our flag and our country, and this is what the supporters expect from us", he recalled, noting that the players who protest in this way " don't do it to disrespect the flag ".

Trump has repeatedly expressed disdain for the protests since a rally in September.

Players kneeling during the national anthem are protesting at the killing of unarmed black men and boys by police across the United States, as well as racial disparities in the criminal justice system.

Goodell said on Wednesday that the question of what individual teams might do had not come up during the meeting. Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said any of his players kneeling during the anthem risked being benched. "We want our players to stand". However, San Francisco 49ers owner Jed York has reportedly vowed to stand by players who continue to kneel.

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