News and Commentary

NFL Player Attacks Media For Not Covering His National Anthem Protest

NFL defensive end Robert Quinn of the Miami Dolphins is upset with the media, not for anything that they have said about him but because of what they didn’t say about him, namely, his weekly protest of the National Anthem.

Speaking with the Miami Herald, Quinn accused the media of ignoring his raised fist every week during the National Anthem.

“Y’all ignore it,” Quinn said. “Because when I gave my first message on trying to bring unity, y’all swept it under the rug. It’s not me. When you don’t give a problematic story, y’all just ran away. You’ve got this lady named Cyntoia Brown, or whatever her name is, and you sent her to life in prison because she was being sex-trafficked. But yet you guys dipped.”

Cyntoia Brown was sentenced to life in prison in Tennessee for a murder she committed at age 16. Activists have called for the courts to show more leniency in her situation due to her young age.

The Miami Herald did write about Quinn’s protest back in April where he described America as something straight from the pages of Howard Zinn’s “A People’s History of the United States.” He said at the time:

The way America was built, and the way people talk …. The president said to build a wall to keep Mexicans out. This country was built off of — they killed Indians, built off the backs of the blacks. So yet, they tell us to keep quiet. So at the end of the day, let’s confront the situation and let’s bring humanity and friendship and let’s get rid of all the ignorance. Let’s face it head-on, let’s look at each other as humans. I always live by this one law: Treat each other like you want to be treated. You don’t ever want to smack someone in the face and don’t expect to get smacked back. It’s just that simple fact. Don’t treat someone bad and expect not to be treated the same way. That’s just how it is.

Following that report, the media mostly highlighted the protests of Dolphins wide-receiver Kenny Stills, whose kneeling attracted more attention than Quinn’s power fist.

“Man, I don’t have nothing to do with Kenny,” Quinn said. “That ain’t got nothing to do with me. All I’m saying is, my production went up because I’m just playing football and America’s got a lot of problems to fix within itself. Tell America to look itself in the mirror and the people who built it.”

Earlier this year, the NFL announced it would be finally putting an end to the polarizing demonstrations launched by Colin Kaepernick by barring players from kneeling during the National Anthem. In no way did it force players to stand for “The Star-Spangled Banner” (they could sit out in the locker room), but it did silence those who wished to use their time on the clock to protest, which was alienating so many fans.

That plan was ultimately scrapped after severe pushback from the NFL Players Association (NFLPA).