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Volume 27 No. 5
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Poll Finds Majority Of Football Fans Support Anthem Kneeling

A poll revealed 56% of Americans now say it is appropriate for athletes to kneel during the anthem
Photo: GETTY IMAGES
A poll revealed 56% of Americans now say it is appropriate for athletes to kneel during the anthem
Photo: GETTY IMAGES
A poll revealed 56% of Americans now say it is appropriate for athletes to kneel during the anthem
Photo: GETTY IMAGES

A majority of football fans said that it is "acceptable for professional athletes to kneel during the national anthem," and an even larger percentage said that athletes "should use their platforms to tackle social issues," according to Maese & Guskin of the WASHINGTON POST. A poll conducted by the Washington Post revealed 56% of Americans now say it is "appropriate for athletes to kneel during the national anthem to protest racial inequality," while 42% say it is "not appropriate." Additionally, a 62% majority of Americans say professional athletes should "use their platforms to express their views on national issues, including over 8 in 10 Black Americans and 7 in 10 adults under age 50." Opinions are "similar among football fans, with 59 percent saying kneeling during the national anthem is an appropriate way to protest racial inequality and 64 percent saying athletes should express views on national issues in general." As shown by the poll, the majority of Republicans and people over the age of 50 call kneeling during the national anthem "not appropriate." The feelings are "particularly divided among partisan lines." Majorities of Democrats -- 73% -- and independents -- 54% -- said that it is "appropriate to kneel during the anthem in protest," while 36% of Republicans said that "it is appropriate." The Washington Post's poll was "conducted Sept. 1-6 among a random national sample of 1,001 adults, with 70 percent reached on cellphones and 30 percent on landlines" (WASHINGTON POST, 9/10).

LONG DIVISION: REUTERS' Amy Tennery cited a Reuters/Ipsos poll as showing that the political divide over athlete protests "has deepened in the four years" since Colin Kaepernick first took a knee. The online poll of 1,337 U.S. adults found Democrats and Republicans are "moving further apart on the issue," with more than half (54%) of Americans "wanting professional athletes to be required to stand" during the national anthem. Among self-identified Democrats, 33% agreed that pro athletes "should be required to stand," compared to 43% in '16. Among Republicans, 81% said that athletes "must stand," compared to 73% in '16 (REUTERS, 9/9).