Tulane professor: NFL anthem protest is part of race movement

Tulane professor: NFL anthem protest is part of race movement
Updated: Sep. 25, 2017 at 6:38 PM CDT
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(WVUE) - Tulane Sociology Professor Stephen Ostertag isn't at all surprised about the NFL players' protest that unfolded during Sunday's game. He says it's part of a movement about race.

"It seems like this is something that's been in the making for a while now," says Ostertag.

He adds, "It's coming to the forefront. It's been in the making for a couple of years now. I think there's a Black Lives Matter movement that has pointed out police brutality against people of color, double standard in terms of how justice is applied and that's been kind of keeping the narrative going."

Ostertag says we first saw Colin Kaepernick take a knee during the national anthem expressing his solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement, and then he says President Trump's comments fueled Sunday's protest even further.

"Clearly something bigger happened on Sunday then had been happened the weeks before. This was really kind of the tipping point," says Ostertag.

While it was the tipping point for the movement, it was the tipping point for fans who decided to express their beliefs as well.

The owner of WOW Café and Wingery in Chalmette immediately took to FACEBOOK and decided not to show Saints games as long as the protests continue.

"She apologized for the inconvenience but she will not support people who are not supporting the National Anthem, which to her means a lot in regards to her family members who served for the military, and that represents the flag of the United States of America," says Ray Sutherline, PR for the Chalmette WOW.

The owner's post went viral and she's been contacted by the national media outlets.

Ray Sutherlin says the owner's decision drew both positive and negative comments.

Sutherlin wants to point out though, the owner's decision was not about race. He says it was about patriotism.

"In her opinion, kneeling during the National Anthem is dishonoring the military, the flag and the United States of America," says Sutherlin.

Ostertag adds, "At the end of the day, it is about patriotism and the treatment of black people in this country that want to be treated equally and fairly and that's very patriotic."

Ostertag says this is an on-going issue that when the climate is right, gets political and media attention. He does not expect any major changes in the near future because of it.

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