President Trump on NFL anthem policy: 'No escaping to locker rooms'
President Donald Trump announced a contingency plan after he canceled plans to honor the Philadelphia Eagles' Super Bowl victory.
The Eagles were supposed to attend a ceremony at the White House on Tuesday, but Trump nixed those plans at the 11th hour, and will instead host "A Celebration of America" featuring military bands and the playing of the national anthem.
In his reasoning for canceling the Eagles visit, Trump said that the team disagrees "with their President because he insists that they proudly stand for the National Anthem."
According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, fewer than 10 players planned to attend the White House celebration.
The NFL Players Association said they were "disappointed" in the decision.
"Our union is disappointed in the decision by the White House to disinvite players from the Philadelphia Eagles from being recognized and celebrated by all Americans for their accomplishment. This decision by the White House has led to the cancellation of several player-led community service events for young people in the Washington, DC area," the union said in a statement. "NFL players love their country, support our troops, give back to their communities and strive to make America a better place."
We will proudly be playing the National Anthem and other wonderful music celebrating our Country today at 3 P.M., The White House, with the United States Marine Band and the United States Army Chorus. Honoring America! NFL, no escaping to Locker Rooms!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 5, 2018
We have had many Championship teams recently at the White House including the Chicago Cubs, Houston Astros, Pittsburgh Penguins, New England Patriots, Alabama and Clemson National Champions, and many others. National Anthem & more great music today at 3:00 P.M.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 5, 2018
"We will proudly be playing the National Anthem and other wonderful music celebrating our Country today at 3 P.M., The White House, with the United States Marine Band and the United States Army Chorus. Honoring America! NFL, no escaping to Locker Rooms!," Trump said in a tweet on Tuesday.
"The Eagles did not mention the president on the canceled event in a statement, instead saying in part, "We are truly grateful for all of the support we have received and we are looking forward to continuing our preparations for the 2018 season."
Trump continued his tirade about the NFL and its players even after the league adopted a policy for the national anthem.
Players can now choose to stay in the locker room during the anthem or join personnel on the sidelines. Those who stand on the sideline will be required to stand or face punishment from the league.