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The 49ers emphasized that "respecting such American principles as freedom of religion and freedom of expression, we recognize the right of an individual to choose to participate, or not, in our celebration of the national anthem. More than a year later, President Donald Trump launched a scathing attack on protesting players and demanded they be fired.
The NFL and the union responded immediately in the players' defense. Trump continued to denounce the protests for weeks and called on football fans to boycott games. Dallas Cowboys team owner Jerry Jones threatened to bench protesting players after consulting with Trump.
Two days later, the league and the union issued a joint statement c onfirming that there was no change in policy around protests. On October 17, a much publicized meeting of the NFL and NFLPA resulted in an agreement "to review and discuss plans to utilize our platform to promote equality and effectuate positive change.
Then, last week, NFL owners abruptly and unilaterally imposed a " new policy " that banned on-field protests and threatened teams and players who would violate it. Contrasts in black and white While the NFL may believe they can shut down free speech on the field, the union puts players in a strong position to defend their right to protest in the face of racial injustice, hostile bosses and Trump.
Kaepernick has remained persona non grata among team owners since becoming a free agent in March Dozens of players and members of the public have protested with that in mind as well as the spate of arrests, maltreatment and, in some cases, death s of African Americans in the hands of police.
Even as deaths by police increased inTrump remained largely silent on the subject—with one notable exception. Speaking before law enforcement officers in Suffolk County, NY, he evoked grim memories of the death of Freddie Gray: Trump's history of racism and, at best, racial insensitivity shed light on the origins of his defense of so-called "alt right" groups—including white nationalists and neo-Nazis—responsible for th e violent protest in Charlottesville, Virginia, that ended with one death and multiple injuries of innocent bystanders.
After commending "some very fine people" among the alt right, Trump garnered praise from various leaders of the movement, including Richard Spencer. He has demanded their termination and most recently suggested that they " shouldn't be in the country. This one lifts me.
Harvard law professor emeritus Alan Dershowitz was among them, asserting on a radio show in October: The players are entitled to kneel if the owners allow them to. Now the owners could say 'no' because the players don't have a First Amendment right in relation to the owners. They only have a First Amendment right in relation to the government.
Dershowitz et al, however, overlooked two essential facts: Up until last week when the NFL reversed course, the league and the union had repeatedly affirmed players' First Amendment rights, and the person who had openly tried to suppress those rights is the President of the United States.
Perhaps the most full-throated legal opinion in favor of the players to date comes from Benjamin Sachs, professor of labor and industry at Harvard Law School.
The NFL has now violated that deal. Absent a change of heart by the league, the union response could be to resort to the CBA's grievance procedures, but there is also compelling labor law that could bring a complaint directly to the National Labor Relations Board.
Dear Twitpic Community - thank you for all the wonderful photos you have taken over the years. We have now placed Twitpic in an archived state. Sports news and opinion. Male Tennis Star Jamie Murray Calls Serena Williams' Sexism Claims 'A Bit Far-Fetched'. Russia is an adversary, but they are not threatening the very existence of the United States. China is. Iran is. North Korea was. Shares.
As Sachs points out: The clearest illegality derives from the fact that the league adopted its new policy without bargaining with the players union. When employees, including football players, are represented by a union, the employer—including a football league—can't change the terms of employment without discussing the change with the union.
Lewis judged by many to be a disaster for working people actually underscores the right of union members to engage in " concerted activity ," as labor law provides. Where the decision went wrong was in undermining that right for nonunion workers contrary to longstanding application and understanding of the law.
Sachs also brings up underlying legal principles to support First Amendment and discrimination laws, but the strongest protections he cites arise from a legal and binding union contract. Power play The true power of collective bargaining is that, despite differences in rights and obligations, both labor and management are co-equal parties to the contract.
Management clearly understood that union workers are not "at will" employees like their nonunion counterparts and consequently can't be fired on a whim without recourse—like Trump demanded. Of course, bosses can try—as they are now, and as they often do when the motive to breach a law or a contract is more enticing than compliance.
They could argue, for example, that the contract gives them the right to set reasonable rules which it does under Article 42but how reasonable is a rule that the NFL abandoned last year after the union intervened?
In matters of discipline, the employer must show just cause by proving that the worker breached a policy that was reasonable, known and consistently applied, and that discipline was reasonable and proportional.
Now that the NFL is pushing a new policy, the only possible point to win would be on the "known" rule standard, but everything else would likely fail. The NFL and team owners have advanced a muddled policy with dubious justifications that Jay Willis of GQ frankly characterized as "beyond stupid.
Even as an unemployed free agent, Colin Kaepernick, too, is protected and is pursuing a high-profile grievance charging the NFL and team owners with violating Article 17, "Anti-Collusion," of the collective bargaining agreement.Fighting is considered by many as an integral part of playing hockey in the National Hockey League (NHL) as well as one of its most honored traditions.
4,11,15,19 The NHL is unique among the 4 major professional sports leagues in the United States (the other 3 being the National Basketball Association, the National Football League, and Major.
When employees, including football players, are represented by a union, the employer—including a football league—can't change the terms of employment without discussing the change with the union. Sports news and opinion. Male Tennis Star Jamie Murray Calls Serena Williams' Sexism Claims 'A Bit Far-Fetched'.
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