by Sharon Rondeau

(Jun. 5, 2018) — On Tuesday morning, President Donald Trump reminded his Twitter followers that instead of meeting with the Philadelphia Eagles football team this afternoon, there will be a concert at the White House beginning at 3:00 PM featuring the U.S. Army Chorus and U.S. Marine Band.

In an abrupt change of plan last night, Trump announced that the Eagles were no longer invited and that the concert would replace their previously-scheduled meeting in a “Celebration of America.”

Later on Monday evening, Trump provided some insight as to why he canceled the Eagles’ visit, tweeting, “The Philadelphia Eagles Football Team was invited to the White House. Unfortunately, only a small number of players decided to come, and we cancel the event. Staying in the Locker Room for the plane of our National Anthem is as disrespectful to our country as kneeling. Sorry!”

His “locker room” reference was to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell’s announcement late last month that NFL players will be required to stand for the playing of the national anthem at the beginning of each game as opposed to kneeling in protest, as some have done over the last two seasons. However, Goodell provided a caveat by which players not wishing to stand for the anthem can remain in the locker room until after the anthem is finished.

Some of those who have protested claim that police unfairly target black Americans, who suffer “oppression” and other indignities within American society.

In his first tweet, along with promoting the concert, Trump wrote, “No escaping to Locker Rooms!”  In his second tweet on the topic, Trump promised that the national anthem, “The Star-Spangled Banner,” and “other wonderful music” will be performed by the military musicians.

Live streaming of the event can be accessed here:  https://www.whitehouse.gov/live/?utm_source=ods&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=1600d

Update, 12:42 p.m.:  CBS’s Mark Knoller tweeted a new announcement from the White House on the cancellation of the Eagles:

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