San Francisco 49ers owner Jed York says his team may stop selling concessions during the national anthem after the NFL cracked down on players protesting during “The Star-Spangled Banner.”
York said he was the only owner to abstain from the NFL’s vote on a new rule that will fine teams when their players kneel during the national anthem, according to the Los Angeles Times.
“I don’t think we should be profiting if we’re going to put this type of attention and focus on the field and on the flag,” he said.
York reportedly added that a deeper look into the issue is necessary.
The NFL officially implemented a new policy Wednesday that will allow the league commissioner to impose “appropriate discipline on league personnel who do not stand and show respect for the flag and the Anthem.”
The policy states that players will not be penalized if they remain in their locker rooms or other off-field locations until the anthem concludes.
Player protests during the anthem became a major national issue after President TrumpDonald John TrumpCNN’s Zucker: Trump ‘secretly watching CNN’ all day and night GOP candidate behind ‘Deportation Bus’ loses in gubernatorial bid Penn to Hewitt: Mueller probe born out of ‘hysteria’ MORE attacked kneeling players last September, calling on NFL owners to fire them.
“Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘G et that son of a bitch off the field right now. He is fired,’ ” Trump said.
Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick in 2016 became the first NFL player to kneel during the anthem. Several more players joined him in protesting social justice issues, and after Trump criticized the protests, dozens of players across the league took a knee during the anthem.
Kaepernick has yet to sign with a team after being released by the 49ers in 2017. He filed a grievance against the NFL accusing teams of collusion.
The NFL Players Association has vowed to challenge the league’s new policy, saying it violates the collective bargaining agreement. However, ESPN has reported that the new anthem policy is covered by the agreement because it is a change to the NFL’s game operations manual.