SHOWS: INTERNET (JUNE 5, 2020) (STILL IMAGE-MUTE) (SOCIAL MEDIA WEBSITE - ACCESS ALL)
1. STILL IMAGE FROM NFL QUARTERBACK DREW BREES' INSTAGRAM PAGE, SAYING:
"To @realdonaldtrump. Through my ongoing conversations with friends, teammates, and leaders in the black community, I realize this is not an issue about the American flag. It has never been. We can no longer use the flag to turn people away or distract them from the real issues that face our black communities. We did this back in 2017, and regretfully I brought it back with my comments this week. We must stop talking about the flag and shift our attention to the real issues of systemic racial injustice, economic oppression, police brutality, and judicial & prison reform. We are at a critical juncture in our nation's history! If not now, then when? We as a white community need to listen and learn from the pain and suffering of our black communities. We must acknowledge the problems, identify the solutions, and then put this into action. The black community cannot do it alone. This will require all of us."
STORY: NFL quarterback Drew Brees posted a message in reply to Donald Trump late Friday (June 5) after the U.S. president took to Twitter to attack protesters who kneel during the national anthem and Brees' apology for remarks he made about the practice.
"Through my ongoing conversations with friends, teammates, and leaders in the black community, I realize this is not an issue about the American flag, it has never been," the 41-year-old New Orleans Saints player said in a post on his Instagram page.
Brees most recent statement comes after saying earlier this week he would "never agree with anybody disrespecting the flag," referring to the possibility of players kneeling during the "Star-Spangled Banner" in the upcoming NFL season. Brees apologized Thursday, saying his words "lacked awareness and any type of compassion or empathy."
The kneeling pose, popularized by NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick, has become a symbol of the fight for racial justice in the United States.
Trump tweeted on Friday that Brees "should not have taken back his original stance."
"We should be standing up straight and tall, ideally with a salute, or a hand on heart," Trump wrote. "There are other things you can protest, but not our Great American Flag - NO KNEELING!"
The kneeling pose has been seen at protests in cities across the country in the wake of the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man, while in police custody in Minneapolis.
In Brees' lengthy social media post late Friday he added, "We must stop talking about the flag and shift our attention to the real issues of systemic racial injustice, economic oppression, police brutality, and judicial & prison reform."
Kaepernick popularized the move in 2016, appearing on NFL sidelines first sitting, and later kneeling, during the customary pre-game airing of the U.S. national anthem.
Trump was an early critic of the protest, and in 2017 Vice President Mike Pence walked out of an NFL game when some of the players knelt on the sidelines during the anthem.
(Production: Stef Haskins and David Grip)