Joe Mahoney/Associated Press
Denver Police Chief Robert White met with Broncos star Brandon Marshall on Tuesday, where the two discussed the linebacker’s decision to kneel during the national anthem among other topics.
Chief White addressed reporters after the meeting, indicating they came away with a better understanding of each other’s positions on the matter.
“I support (Marshall’s) right to express his first amendment rights. Whether I agree or disagree is totally irrelevant,” White said, per of the Denver Post.
White said he also gave Marshall some suggestions on how to handle his protest. He did not go into specifics on what those were.
The 27-year-old linebacker became the first player to take a knee during the national anthem during a regular-season game, doing so before the Broncos’ win over the Carolina Panthers last Thursday. He was the latest in a growing list of players who have joined Colin Kaepernick in the form of protest, which is mean to highlight racial inequality.
“The message is that I’m against social injustice,” Marshall told reporters after the game. “I’m not against the military, police or America at all. I’m against social injustice and I feel like this is the right thing to do. I feel like this is the right platform. This is our only platform you know, to really be heard, and I feel a lot of times, people want us to just shut up and entertain them, shut up and play football.”
Chief White said the action is only the first step, and he hopes Marshall uses his platform to help enact change.
“I think he understands that kneeling is an acknowledgement of a problem…I do believe that one person can make a difference. You don’t have to be a police chief to make a difference,” White said, per Jhabvala.
Marshall has also been given the opportunity to ride along with Denver police and see how they handle their day-to-day interactions with citizens. It’s unclear if Marshall will take White up on that offer, but it was clear the chief wanted to keep an open dialogue with him going forward.
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