Hall of Fame quarterback Joe Namath appeared on “Fox & Friends” Tuesday to defend NFL players kneeling for the national anthem, telling those who don’t believe players have cause to protest racial inequality to look up the definition of oppression.
“[G]oing back to what Colin Kaepernick initially did, it was to point out some injustice that’s being done to the black race,” Namath said, “or to people that obviously, when you look, and I say obviously … some of these dash cams and shootings that were done to unarmed people. He was reaching out to try to get it more investigated. So, that’s where this oppression thing comes in.”
Namath’s comments come after fellow NFL Hall of Fame inductee Mike Ditka told Westwood One that there’s been no oppression in the United States for the last 100 years.
“I think that you have to be color blind in this country. [You have] got to look at a person for what he is and what he stands for, and how he produces. All of a sudden, it’s become a big dealing now about oppression. There has been no oppression in the last 100 years that I know of. I don’t care who you are, how much money you make. If you don’t respect our country, then you shouldn’t be in this country playing football,” Ditka said.
“[L]ook up the meaning of oppression,” Namath retorted in response. “Look up the definition of oppression, and you understand that it’s obviously taken place.”
He did concede he believes owners have a right to forbid players from protesting in the workplace.
“Ownership has ownership. If somebody starts walking through here carrying a sign, what are the powers that be at FOX going to say to you? ‘Excuse me. Go do that somewhere else. Don’t do it in the workplace.’”
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