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Mt. Pleasant News   Wash Journal
Neighbors Growing Together | Jun 19, 2018

Philadelphia Eagles players push back against Fox News ‘propaganda’

By Field Level Sports | Jun 06, 2018

Eagles defensive end Chris Long called Fox News complicit in playing America for use of images of Philadelphia players kneeling in prayer before games -- and never during the national anthem -- last season as the network’s backdrop for the story of the Super Bowl champions’ rescinded White House invitation.

Long and tight end Zach Ertz used social media to challenge Fox News for its use Tuesday morning of footage of Eagles players praying before games during a segment about protests during the national anthem.

“This can’t be serious,” Ertz wrote on Twitter. “Praying before games with my teammates, well before the anthem, is being used for your propaganda?! Just sad, I feel like you guys should have to be better than this...”

Long added roughly an hour later: “Imagine wanting to please the boss so very badly that you run stills of guys knelt down PRAYING during pregame,” Long wrote. “Not one Eagles player knelt for the anthem this yr. Keep carrying his water to sow division while misrepresenting Christian men. Aren’t many of your viewers.. nevermind.

“You’re complicit in PLAYING America. This is just another day at the office for you, though. Most players (and there were many players, many players...) that wanted to opt out had decided long b4 the anthem rule came down. It wasn’t discussed once in our meetings about the visit.”

A delegation was supposed to be in Washington on Tuesday, but President Donald Trump publicly rescinded the invitation on Monday night, claiming the team didn’t show proper respect for the country during the playing of the Star-Spangled Banner last season.

No Eagles players took a knee during the national anthem last season.

A statement from the president released on Monday reads, in full:

“The Philadelphia Eagles are unable to come to the White House with their full team to be celebrated tomorrow. They disagree with their President because he insists that they proudly stand for the National Anthem, hand on heart, in honor of the great men and women of our military and the people of our country. The Eagles wanted to send a smaller delegation, but the 1,000 fans planning to attend the event deserve better. These fans are still invited to the White House to be part of a different type of ceremony -- one that will honor our great country, pay tribute to the heroes who fight to protect it, and loudly and proudly play the National Anthem. I will be there at 3:00 p.m. with the United States Marine Band and the United States Army Chorus to celebrate America.”

Philadelphia mayor Jim Kenney did not hold back his opinion on the matter, calling Trump “a fragile egomaniac obsessed with crowd size and afraid of the embarrassment of throwing a party to which no one wants to attend.”

The NFL Players Association, which is based in Washington, DC, released a statement backing the Eagles.

“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.”

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