Trump steps up attack on National Football League with new anthem protests petition

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Several NFL owners and player representatives met in NY on Tuesday to discuss the ongoing protests against racial injustice during the national anthem before games and decided not to take any action to penalize players participating in the protests. Trump waded back into the anthem controversy with an early morning tweet after National Football League team owners and player representatives met in NY on Tuesday.

The Trump campaign released a petition encouraging everyone to stand for the national anthem.

"Too much talk, not enough action", he wrote, referring to the league, in a Twitter post on Wednesday afternoon.

But, after a meeting Tuesday with union representatives and players, the league did promise to help support some of the causes targeted by the protesting players, including reform of the criminal justice system. "NFL executives and owners joined NFLPA executives and player leaders to review and discuss plans to utilize our platform to promote equality and effectuate positive change", the statement said. "We did not ask for that", Goodell said.

"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 ". "That's what we're having with our players".

Trump has harshly criticized players who refuse to stand for the anthem, previously stating at a rally in late September owners need to "get that son of a bitch off the field".

The petition came days after NFL team owners, executives and players met in NY, where they decided that the league would not implement a rule forcing players to stand for "The Star-Spangled Banner".

Trump's comments, however, only appeared to fuel the anthem protest movement as more players than ever before protested the national anthem in some manner the following Sunday. Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said any of his players kneeling during the anthem risked being benched.