dale earnhart jr

Screengrab via DARREN4FAN/YouTube

NASCAR star Dale Earnhardt Jr. defends NFL protests

Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s statement flies in the face of other NASCAR leaders' threats.


Monica Riese

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Posted on Sep 25, 2017   Updated on May 22, 2021, 4:23 pm CDT

The silent protests sweeping the sidelines at NFL games just hit America’s heartland where it hurts: NASCAR.

Racing legend Dale Earnhardt Jr. spoke out on Twitter this morning, as news of the protests—and the president’s response—consumed headlines. But his statement wasn’t what you might have expected to come from the star of a sport largely embraced by blue-collar workers in red-voting states.

His tweet—a JFK quote supporting Americans’ right to peaceful protests—came just half an hour after President Donald Trump praised NASCAR for the opposite view. Retired racer Richard Petty and team owner Richard Childress had both made blunt statements over the weekend against any drivers who might attempt to protest, with the latter suggesting protesters should simply “Get you a ride on a Greyhound bus when the national anthem is over.”

Elsewhere on Twitter, one veteran spent the weekend pointing out America’s hypocrisy when it comes to disrespecting the stars and stripes. As of this writing, that thread had tallied 263,502 likes, compared to Earnhardt Jr.’s 122,000 and the president’s 98,000.

H/T Raw Story

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*First Published: Sep 25, 2017, 12:19 pm CDT