According to the Los Angeles Times, a U.S. District Court in California has struck down a local school district’s rules that would have forced players to “stand and remove hats/helmets… during the playing or singing of the national anthem”.
The issue comes after a football player at San Pasqual Valley High School took a knee as a form of protest during the national anthem prior to a game. According to the Times, the rules restricting players from protesting during the anthem were put in place after students from a rival high school “threatened to force” the player to stand.
The issues are amid the national anthem protests that have been prevalent in the NFL over the past two seasons. Former San Francisco 49ers starting quarterback Colin Kaepernick was at the forefront of the movement, which continued into the 2017 season after Kaepernick went unsigned when he became a free agent.
The kneeling became a fiery national topic in September of this year when President Donald Trump proclaimed in a speech that he would fire players that knelt during the anthem. The comments from Trump sparked another round of widespread kneeling and protests in the NFL, as several players, coaches, and even team owners demonstrated in response to the President’s remarks.