Zendaya, Ellen DeGeneres, John Legend And More Support The NFL 'Take A Knee' Demonstrations

Celebrities and athletes react strongly to Donald Trump saying protesting NFL players should be 'fired'

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Around two dozen National Football League (NFL) players knelt while the American national anthem played at Wembley Stadium in London, defying Donald Trump after he suggested players who take a knee during the anthem should be fired.

The outrage kicked off on Friday night, after Trump made a series of comments during a speech at a rally in Alabama.

'Wouldn't you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, 'Get that son of a b**** off the field right now. Out! He's fired. He's fired!' said Trump.

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In the rally, Trump referenced the growing trend of players taking a knee during the national anthem, which first began in 2016 by ex-San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick in a statement aimed against police brutality.

Trump continued: 'You know, some owner is going to do that. He's going to say, 'That guy that disrespects our flag, he's fired.' And that owner, they don't know it [but] they'll be the most popular person in this country.'

The president then followed up his inflammatory words with a series of tweets over the weekend and seemingly uninvited the NBA champion Stephen Curry from the traditional White House visit for league victors.

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The reaction from the nation's top athletes was instantaneous: LeBron James called the president a 'bum' and, hours later, Major League Baseball saw its first player take a knee during the national anthem.

The president then went further on Sunday morning by telling fans to boycott games.

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But the kneeling NFL players have courted a huge amount of support from A-Listers across the nation. Dozens of stars, including Ellen DeGeneres and John Legend, took to social media to support the on-field demonstrations from NFL players.

Stevie Wonder showed solidarity by 'taking a knee' at the 2017 Global Citizens Festival over the weekend.

On stage at Central Park, the 'Isn't She Lovely' singer said he was 'taking a knee for America'.

He went on: 'But not just one knee, I'm taking both knees, both knees in prayer for our planet, our future, our leaders of the world and our globe – amen.'

Actress Zendaya tweeted and Instagrammed several times on the issue.

Take the knee. Solidarity.

A post shared by Zendaya (@zendaya) on

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And many other celebrities expressed their outrage:

#TakeaKnee #DarknessAndLightTour #GLORY

A post shared by John Legend (@johnlegend) on

John Legend also wrote a piece for Slate about why the NFL players' protests are patriotic which you can read here.

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Grey's Anatomy's Jesse Williams went on MSNBC to explain why taking a knee was so important, which he documented further through a series of Instagram posts:

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