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John Wall: Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers must speak out on national anthem debate

Photo by Quinn Foster | UK Athletics

Photo by Quinn Foster | UK Athletics

Today is Media Day in the NBA, and after yesterday’s national anthem protests across the NFL, it was only a matter of time before a former Kentucky player was asked to share their thoughts. Fresh off his UK Athletics Hall of Fame induction, John Wall told CSN Mid-Atlantic that until the NFL’s major stars like Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers step up and speak out, nothing will change.

“You have guys like Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers – love those guys, very talented – but until those guys come out and speak, I don’t think the NFL is going to make any adjustments,”  Wall said.

Yesterday, hundreds of NFL players kneeled during the national anthem following President Donald Trump’s remarks on Friday that players who do so should be fired. Wall used Chris Paul, Dwayne Wade, Carmelo Anthony, and LeBron James’ comments during the Donald Sterling controversy in 2014 as an example of how franchise players like Brady and Rodgers can address the situation.

“When we were dealing with our stuff with Donald Sterling, people were saying, well, if LeBron and those guys don’t come out, if Kobe doesn’t come out and say something, there’s never going to be a stand taken. When those guys came out and started talking, what happened? He was fired. The stand stood.”

“Until those guys in the NFL come out and stand up for [Colin] Kaepernick and stand for those guys — he can say the little things like, he should have been in and he’s a great player, he beat us in his hometown — but you have to go out there and express your feelings. Until they do that, I don’t think anything is going to change.”

Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

41 Comments for John Wall: Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers must speak out on national anthem debate

  1. KYWildCatsFan
    3:17 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

    They have the right, just like those guys kneeling, to stay quite about the whole situation.

  2. Sentient Third Eye
    3:26 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

    That makes no sense. This all allegedly began to protest perceived police brutality. That was the reason straight from Kaepernick’s own mouth. But all the NFL owners and the league office combined have exactly zero power influence that because none of them have any legislative power whatsoever. So what is the point beyond grandstanding to “virtue signal” that they are “good guys” to social justice warriors? There isn’t any logical one.

    To be honest, I don’t think John Wall even knows why these players were kneeling, but that’s not surprising since they don’t really either. These “me too” protesters don’t seem to be on the same page concerning what they are protesting. Some were joining Kaepernick’s protest against police brutality, others were mad at Trump because he indirectly insulted their mothers, and others really just were classic high-school. tag-alongs.

    • Duff86
      4:42 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

      It’s evolved in to a protest against Trump. They know what they are speaking out against.

  3. KTR2786
    3:29 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

    I have never seen such a generic and nebulous “protest;” what needs to change? Why? Where is the evidence, statistics? Is there any substance to this movement at all or is it all slacktivism and campaign slogans about a non-issue?

    • Rise
      3:43 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

      Because statistics and facts are ignored by these people. They don’t want to hear them because it doesn’t fit their agenda.

    • J-Dub421
      3:53 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

      Why are African Americans 2.7 times more likely to be shot and killed by police than whites, when they only make up 13% of the us population vs. 60% of the population for whites?

    • Rise
      4:20 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

      African Americans also commit more murders and armed robberies than white while only being 13% of the population. Point being, African Americans are putting themselves in shitty situations to get shot by please.

    • KTR2786
      4:01 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

      I’m going to say it has a lot to do with the fact that 4% of the population (black males 15-40) commits over HALF of the murder in this country and are over-represented in nearly every criminal category. They are also more likely to shoot at police and white in whole numbers are shot more by police. They have also conducted scientific studies that determined police were more hesitant to use lethal force against blacks. This entire conspiracy theory about racism against blacks is largely fabricated propaganda.

    • J-Dub421
      4:06 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

      African Americans are policed at a much higher rate than whites. People complain about drugs in the inner cities. Why don’t they do more policing in places like Eastern Kentucky where the opioid crisis is completely out of hand?

    • KTR2786
      4:17 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

      That is a disingenuous or misinformed way of interpreting the situation as it relates to whatever numbers you have looked at. For one, black populations are densely clustered in urban areas in which there are more opportunities to commit and report crime and easier for police to respond to. Also, while the opiod crisis is an issue, it doesn’t seem to lead to vicious cycles of violence and other crime which effect numerous people in the immediate area. So you seem to suggest pulling police out of the crime ridden inner cities so they can patrol larges swathes of the countryside looking for isolated heroin addicts? Ignoring the insane misallocation of resources, I can already hear the screams from BLM about how no one cares about the black community when crime rates skyrocket.

    • KTR2786
      5:05 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

      Wow, a link to an article. Awesome. Three things:
      1. You read Vice, no wonder you’re so indoctrinated to a 7th grade level understanding of statistics.
      2. What does any of this have to do with anything? Why are we talking about white people doing drugs?
      3. The crackdown on the crack epidemic was largely driven by black leaders who demanded harsh treatment of offenders because they saw what it was doing to their communities. Plus, harsher sentences are usually dealt to people who have a rap sheet of crime as we learned earlier is prevalent in black communities.

      You should really dig to the underlying assumptions and data sets any time you have an article from somewhere like Vice that uses generic stats to spout their erroneous extrapolations.

    • J-Dub421
      5:22 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

      White people have been shown to use drugs at the same rates (or higher) as blacks, but whites get sent to jail less and have lighter sentences. You keep trying to act like their isn’t a systemic racism problem in the US. There is one. The issue here is the completely different response to drug offences based on race. When a black person has a drug problem, they get labeled as thugs and criminals. When it’s a white person with the drug problem, they are labeled as addicts who need treatment. The disparity is striking.

    • KTR2786
      5:51 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

      Usage rates between races has nothing to do with conviction rates. I have already provided two reasons above which explain the minor discrepancy in conviction rates of people who actually get CAUGHT, but I will again point out a failure of thought for you here. Did you look into the circumstances of all of these events? Are they numbers reflective of two people with the same criminal background? Is this comparing a white college kid smoking weed in his dorm to a black guy getting caught with a crack rock in his pocket after committing another crime? You cannot simply make these huge extrapolations from a simple statistic, otherwise I can label the NBA as horribly racist because it’s 75% black when black men are 4% of the population. Even if you are 100% correct on this one issue, you are light years away from proving the monumental claim that there is a “systematic” racist system at work lol. It is tiring explaining this to you, try releasing your prejudice when thinking of these things.

  4. sprtphan
    3:30 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

    Maybe Kaepernick should make an adjustment and start looking for a real job. Maybe professional protester like the dems like to hire.

  5. Joe Dan Gorman
    3:40 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

    Just stop.

    NO 1: This did not start with Trump… it started last season with Kaperdink.

    NFL players do not have a right under our Constitution to protest during work hours… unless the owners give it to them. but they do not have the constitutional right— they are employees… like a waitress at the Olive Garden.

    Does this waitress have the right to preach politics to you when you just want to place your order and eat? no she does not… and if she did as, she will likely be fired… as she should be.

    And if her boss condones it— as is the case with the NFL— the consumer may choose to consume elsewhere.


    • J-Dub421
      3:50 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

      Then stop playing the national anthem before games. Using your example, you don’t have to stand for the national anthem before dining in Olive Garden.

      Prior to 2009, players weren’t even on the field for the national anthem. Then the DOJ paid the NFL a bunch of money because they wanted the players to “look more patriotic” for purposes of military recruiting. The DOJ should stop wasting our tax dollars recruiting at NFL games.

    • Cletis75
      4:38 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

      Jdub, so what you are saying is that this is the Obama administration’s fault for paying the NFL off to make it look like the players had his back?

    • J-Dub421
      4:57 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

      No, I’m saying we need to get forced paid for patriotism out of public arenas.

    • Smartest most logical thing I’ve read or heard all day.

  6. Rise
    3:41 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

    Let’s be clear, the real reason the protest are going about is due to Hillary Clinton losing the election and people are being sore losers about it. Racism and police brutality is no doubt wrong, but people are blowing it way out of proportion. Yes, racism still exist and it will always exist, sad but true. People are just so tore up about Trump being president that they are acting like spoiled toddler brats. These “protesters” are causing more division between people than any so called “deplorable”.

  7. John Henry
    3:45 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

    I have joined the growing list of fans who have nothing to do with the NFL or NBA anymore. I have not watched the NFL one time this season. This whole issue was started by a lie. A lie called “Hands Up Don’t Shoot”. It never happened but the media went with it and an ignorant community bought into it. Now they believe police officers are hunting down blacks to kill them. Just one lie after another.

    The NFL needs to be told the football field is their work place. Most work places in America do not allow employees to bring politics to the office. This is not a First Amendment issue because no one has total freedom of speech at their work place. If you don’t believe it try to do something at work that is controversial and I will meet you in the Human Resources office to tell you I told you so. The NFL could stop this immediately.but they are afraid. Afraid the misinformed black athlete will walk out on them. That might not be a bad idea.

    • KTR2786
      3:54 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

      Exactly! The entire narrative was started on a lie about Michael Brown which at best makes it shameful. Not to mention BLM lists Assata Shakur as their inspiration; just a racist, violent cop killer who has taken up asylum in Cuba.

  8. macattack
    3:54 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

    Man, reading through these comments is all the reminder I need of how fragile the white male psyche is. And you guy are the ones calling the people on the left “snowflakes”. White men just cant handle the fact that racism still exists in our country. In sociological circles, the term is called “white fragility”. I encourage all of you to go do some reading into it. And I get it, the thought makes you uncomfortable… Maybe we should be looking at why it makes us uncomfortable, rather than trying to belittle those who are expressing their views in a peaceful way.

    • KTR2786
      3:57 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

      So asking for explanations and evidence to what is starting to sound more and more like a conspiracy theory is now labeled “white fragility?” I too have heard a term for the pseudo-intellectual babble that comes out of the social “sciences”: Newspeak.

    • Steve Perry
      4:12 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

      Stop racial profiling. You have no idea who these posters are.

    • somerset bill
      6:18 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

      “trying to belittle those who are expressing their views in a peaceful way,” macattack?

    • 500 years from now “white people” in America will still be labeled as racist. As long as there is a majority and a minority this will exist. All the arguing in the world will not change that fact.

    • jaws2
      9:42 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

      I hate to break it to you, but it’s not going to take 500 years. White males will be a minority in less than 50 years. So say the population ‘experts ‘. I do agree, up until it happens we’ll be blamed for everything. That’s the way it is today. It’s the easy way out for all of our social ills. Damn shame.

  9. Steve Perry
    4:11 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

    I love John Wall and always will, but he has no idea what he’s talking about. I agree that the owners should change the rule to keep the players inside during the anthem. Most of the players are protesting because they see it as an us versus them. The flag should be a unifying symbol for ALL Americans. It’s not decisive and should not be disrespected in any way (even if you have the right to). Didn’t Kaepernick say that he wouldn’t kneel anymore anyway? If you believe that a protest will effect real change then go for it. Don’t do it because your friend/teammates are or because the President said something stupid.

  10. Sentient Third Eye
    4:17 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

    While I acknowledge the fundamental right to protest, I also see hypocrisy here and a failure to fulfill the responsibility that comes with rights. The reason these athletes have been blessed with such charmed lives of wealth and ease is because other men died to secure it for them. Many of those men can’t kneel at all because their legs were blown off. Others can’t because they are dead. The absolute least they could do is honor those heroes who have gifted them with plenty by standing for a measley few minutes of song.

  11. kellywjohnson
    4:50 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

    Political stories and the ensuing moronic comments from both sides have no place on this site. When this site becomes the Kentucky Political Radio website, I will ignore it just as I do CNN and Fox.

  12. 8xchamp
    4:58 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

    They’re all ungrateful morons, that don’t understand actual statistics on anything. Pawns in a game to uneducated to know the difference. I won’t watch any of it. Ratings show I’m not alone.

  13. Dragon
    5:47 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

    Exactly! The method doesn’t match the cause!! It’s a “hey look at me….he’s being mean!” society. Kneel or stand. Do what you want but I will use my 1st amendment right to dislike you if you kneel.

  14. AGSlater
    5:51 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

    This whole protesting is basically turning into blacks vs whites. Blacks once again want everyone to know their pain and suffering living in the greatest country in the world. Its all the white mans fault. Those millionaire athletes have it so bad in life. Most are doing it knowing they have no clue why they are doing it. Trump is not going to get impeached because of kneelers. We have atleast 3 more years of this to go. If they as in blacks would actually do some research crime numbers clearly show more whites by almost double the number have been murdered by cops in recent years. NFL is taking a huge hit in ratings and NBA will do the same now. Trump is also an idiot for running his mouth to these players because he is fueling the fire. Just leave it. Why not just stop playing the anthem all together at sporting events? That will stop the madness

  15. jaws2
    6:26 pm September 25, 2017 Permalink

    If the NFL decided to keep players in the locker room until after the anthem, the players would then protest because they’re not allowed the ‘right’ to protest openly. Next thing you know they’ll protest coming out of the tunnels prior to kickoff. This will not end until the owners have the balls, ala Jerry Jones last year, make it very clear to the players. You do this on my time on my payroll you’re gone. Hmmmm, no problem in Dallas yet.
    These players DO NOT have a ‘RIGHT’ to protest while they’re on the job.
    As an owner, If this were to happen at my business I’d make it very simple. I’d have a dialogue with the people involved so that they understood why it’s not acceptable and give them the consequences. If it happened again, jobs would be lost. Sorry, but if you’re costing me and other non participating employees money, it would not be tolerated. I wouldn’t give a damn if they were purple people! It’s just that simple.

  16. Luether
    12:40 am September 26, 2017 Permalink

    John Wall should stick to basketball. He is uninformed and misinformed about most everything else..

  17. LegggoooCats
    1:39 am September 26, 2017 Permalink

    Give me college sports over these self-centered, self-entitled pro athletes any day. College Basketball > NBA and College Football > NFL

    These “protests” have actually been counter intuitive because they’ve brought about nothing but anger, divisiveness, and a blatant disrespect to our country, and the heroes in uniform. If a former Kentucky player kneels… they no longer have my support. There are other ways to go about it, if you truly feel like you must. And even if you don’t like President Trump, show the man respect as our Commander in Chief.

  18. trumpet player
    9:12 am September 26, 2017 Permalink

    Could we please quit talking about sports so much and talk more about politics on this site!