President Trump, who has previously called athletes who kneel during the national anthem “sons of bitches,” asked the protesting NFL players to recommend “friends of theirs or people that they know about” to get pardoned, “because that’s what they’re protesting.”
“They’re not proud enough to stand for our national anthem, I don’t like that,” Trump said to reporters outside the White House on Friday, attacking their protests as “talk, talk, talk.”
Trump said he plans to ask kneeling athletes to recommend “friends of theirs or people that they know about” who they think should be pardoned.
“I am going to ask all of those people to recommend to me — because that’s what they’re protesting — people that they think were unfairly treated by the justice system,” Trump said.
“I’m going to take a look at those applications,” Trump said. “If my committee finds that they’re unfairly treated, then we will pardon them or at least let them out.”
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) June 8, 2018
NFL players began kneeling during the “The Star-Spangled Banner” in the 2016 season to protest racial inequality and police brutality.
Trump has repeatedly attacked the protests as disrespectful to the country.
Trump also declared on Friday that he has “the absolute right” to pardon himself for any crime.