zendaya, zoë kravitz and more support nfl players who #taketheknee in defiance of trump
A chorus of voices — including Yara Shahidi, Jesse Williams, and J.Cole — swells, condemning Donald Trump and applauding the N.F.L. players protesting racial injustices.
Left, Zendaya via @zendaya/Instagram. Right, Zoë Kravitz by Matt Jones for i-D.
Actors, comedians, and musicians alike are standing behind the N.F.L. players choosing to kneel during the national anthem, following a series of sudden attacks from Donald Trump.
Former San Francisco 49ers' quarterback Colin Kaepernick began the movement to kneel in 2016, protesting the deaths of black teenagers at the hands of police. Kaepernick told the league he was "not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of colour." His contracts with the team has since expired, and he remains unsigned — many believe the NFL is blackballing him for the protest.
In a bizarre turn of events, during a Friday speech Donald Trump took aim at the few players who've knelt in solidarity with Kaepernick, urging N.F.L. owners to fire players who protest. "Wouldn't you love to see one of these N.F.L. owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, 'Get that son of a bitch off the field right now, out, he's fired,'" Trump told the crowd at a rally for fellow Republican Luther Strange.
He continued the tirade on Twitter, and hurled additional criticism's at the NBA's Stephen Curry. The response from sportspeople and artists across the country was immediate, condemning Trump's attack on player's freedom of speech. Come Sunday's N.F.L. matches, more players knelt than ever before.
"TAKE. A. KNEE." Zoë Kravitz captioned an Instagram post yesterday, later writing "What does this country STAND FOR ? Ask yourself. And if it's not for love, equality, honesty, and respect ... you don't have to stand at all."
Zendaya tweeted #TakeTheKnee and shared pictures of players, including Kaepernick, kneeling. She also retweeted a number of messages in support of the swelling peaceful protest, including Tweets from the ACLU and Ava DuVernay.
Chance the Rapper also joined the chorus of voices, which included Diddy, J. Cole, Mark Ronson, VICELAND's Desus, Evan Rachel Wood, Jesse Williams, Sarah Silverman and John Legend. Blackish's Yara Shahidi also retweeted messages in support of the protest, as did Mia Farrow.