When the NFL teams take the field before Week 1 of the 2020 season, they will likely do so after witnessing a new experiment. The league is reportedly planning to play "Lift Ev'ry Voice and Sing," which is commonly known as the Black national anthem, before "The Star-Spangled Banner." The expectation is that this will take place before every Week 1 game, starting with the Thursday night opener between the Kansas City Chiefs and Houston Texans. However, many expressed opposition to the plan.
When reports surfaced about the NFL and the Black national anthem, Twitter users sounded off. Golden State Warriors star Steph Curry, NFL Hall of Famer Shannon Sharpe and many others expressed criticism of this plan and asked how this display solves any problems. Other users voiced their critique while saying that this move is divisive. They voiced the opinion that the "Star-Spangled Banner" is a unifying song. The NFL had some supporters on social media, but several said that this plan to play the Black national anthem is only distracting from the real issues.
So the NFL will play the black national anthem prior to Week 1 games? What happened to one nation? One people? A UNITED states bound by our love of country and not divided into race?— Tomi Lahren (@TomiLahren) July 3, 2020
The #NFL is going to play The black national anthem before every game. That just makes me feel so much better as a black man. Perhaps after that, they will serve fried chicken.— Dr Boyce Watkins (@drboycewatkins1) July 3, 2020
Will they be taking a Knee during the Black National Anthem in the NFL?— Matt Couch 🎙 (@RealMattCouch) July 3, 2020
Hey @NFL... since you're going to play a Black national anthem this season, will you also be playing a White national anthem, Hispanic national anthem, Asian national anthem, and a Middle Eastern national anthem?— Omar Navarro (@RealOmarNavarro) July 4, 2020
The moment I see players standing for a “black” National Anthem & kneeling for America’s National Anthem, I will NEVER watch 1 second of #NFL football again!
NEVER!!— Bradley Scott 🙏🇺🇸 (@Hoosiers1986) July 3, 2020
It’s a nice gesture for the @NFL to play the Black National Anthem, but until they start hiring more Blacks and advocating on behalf of potential Black head coach prospects to team owners, this gesture is meaningless.— Shermichael Singleton (@Shermichael_) July 3, 2020
There is no such thing as a Black National Anthem.
Stop the pandering.— Errol Webber For Congress (CA-37) (@ErrolWebber) July 3, 2020
Nothing says "unity" like playing a separate National Anthem for black people and white people at NFL games.— TRE (@Lifeline1968) July 3, 2020
Will the NFL guys kneel during the Black National Anthem or only during the American National Anthem? 🤔— Anthony Brian Logan (ABL) 🇺🇸 (@ANTHONYBLOGAN) July 3, 2020
This black national anthem they speak of was originally wrote in honor of Abraham Lincoln a Republican. But way to go NFL and naming it the black national anthem in further dividing this country. We are one country therefore we only need one national anthem.— Dave 🇺🇸🤘👽🖖 (@Dave18850809) July 3, 2020
NFL announces the National Anthem will be preceded by the Black National Anthem, Hispanic National Anthem, Native American National Anthem, Jewish National Anthem, and The Devil Went Down To Georgia pic.twitter.com/7fVNzMhSm6— Denlesks (@Denlesks) July 3, 2020
When the NFL starts playing the "black national anthem," and half the stadium remains sitting, what happens then?— Bob Lonsberry (@BobLonsberry) July 3, 2020
I know it won't make a difference but I'm done with the NFL. I won't watch it this year. I was surprised by all my family members and co-workers that said the same thing. The NFL is helping to divide this country by kneeling & a Black National Anthem.— NatureBoy (@NatureBowhunter) July 4, 2020
The Black national anthem is performative for the NFL.
0 Black team owners (0%)
2 Black GMs (6%)
3 Black Head Coaches (9%)
In a sport where 70% of the players are Black.
That’s exactly what institutional racism looks like.
They need to address that, instead of the anthem.— Peter Darker (@IAmLeoGlaze) July 3, 2020