NFL anthem protests: Florida police union offers olive branch to players

A South Florida police union wants to stop the NFL players from kneeling at games and is willing to listen and discuss player hostility toward law enforcement in the United States, even as it calls for a boycott of Miami Dolphins' games.

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Two Miami Dolphins players took a knee during the national anthem before Thursday’s preseason opener on First Responders Appreciation Day -- and now the Palm Beach County Police Benevolent Association (PBA) is calling for a ticket boycott of the Miami Dolphins.

“I thought this was going to be a start for law enforcement across the country. I thought we were going to be ground zero,” Palm Beach County PBA President John Kazanjian told FOX BusinessStuart Varney on Tuesday. “Except on Thursday night — watching the game — prior to and after, we saw a couple of NFL players kneeling and that just shot it right down.”

NFL free agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick sparked the debate during the 2016 season while playing for the San Francisco 49ers when he refused to stand for the national anthem to protest social injustice.

“It’s all about police officers and police officer brutality against black men… which is absolutely not true,” Kazanjian said.

The NFL and its players association announced in July that the league would put their new anthem policy – that would allow players to stay in the locker room during the national anthem but required them to stand if they decide to come onto the field – on hold while the two sides negotiated.

“Hopefully they can resolve that issue and we can get on and we can prohibit them from kneeling and we can attend some football games and have a good dialogue — that’s what we want,” Kazanjian said. “We want a dialogue and whatever their reasons are we can come to the table also and we can voice our grievances.”