NFL National Anthem Protests
The First Amendment to the United States Constitution prohibits the making of any law respecting an establishment of religion, impeding the free exercise of religion, abridging the freedom of speech, infringing on the freedom of the press, interfering with the right to peaceably assemble or prohibiting the petitioning for a governmental redress of grievances.
Though the First Amendment protects citizens from prosecution and government censorship, it does not guarantee citizens will not face non-judicial consequences for statements or actions expressing an individual’s beliefs, especially when those actions bring negative publicity to the brand of the institution the individual represents or is a member of. Citizens routinely face consequences outside of the courts, such as from employers and educational institutions, for personal posts made on social media. Celebrities often lose endorsement deals for controversial remarks. US servicemen and women can be held accountable for political expressions made while in uniform under the military’s Uniform Code of Military Justice.
Is it in the discretion of the NFL commissioner or NFL owners to take disciplinary action (fines, suspensions, separations) against players protesting the National Anthem prior to games?