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#pounditWednesday, September 30, 2020

Oklahoma politician threatens action against Thunder for kneeling

The vast majority of NBA players have chosen to kneel during the national anthem before games, and one Oklahoma politician is warning the Thunder that they will face financial consequences if their players continue to take part in the demonstrations.

Rep. Sean Roberts (R-Hominy) issued a statement on Friday night threatening to reexamine the Thunder’s tax benefits in the state of Oklahoma if players continue to kneel during the national anthem. He called the protests “anti-patriotic.” Roberts also criticized the Black Lives Matter movement for having “ties to Marxism.”

“By kneeling during the playing of the national anthem, the NBA and its players are showing disrespect to the American flag and all it stands for,” Roberts wrote in the statement, via Hicam Raache of KFOR. This anti-patriotic act makes clear the NBA’s support of the Black Lives Matter group and its goal of defunding our nation’s police, its ties to Marxism and its efforts to destroy nuclear families.

“If the Oklahoma City Thunder leadership and players follow the current trend of the NBA by kneeling during the national anthem prior to Saturday’s game, perhaps we need to reexamine the significant tax benefits the State of Oklahoma granted the Oklahoma City Thunder organization when they came to Oklahoma. Through the Quality Jobs Act, the Thunder is still under contract to receive these tax breaks from our state until 2024.”

Roberts said the funds that go toward helping the Thunder may be better served supporting the police department than organizations that are trying to defund the police. The Thunder did not respond when Raache sought comment from the team.

Most NBA players have taken a knee during the anthem since the season resumed, though a few have chosen to stand and explained their rationale.

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