(CNSNews.com) - In three tweets Monday morning, President Trump said his comments about NFL players who kneel during the national anthem have nothing to do with race. He also praised the fans who booed those players, and he praised NASCAR for refusing to put up with such behavior:
-- "So proud of NASCAR and its supporters and fans. They won't put up with disrespecting our Country or our Flag - they said it loud and clear!"
-- "Many people booed the players who kneeled yesterday (which was a small percentage of total). These are fans who demand respect for our Flag!"
-- "The issue of kneeling has nothing to do with race. It is about respect for our Country, Flag and National Anthem. NFL must respect this!"
In a flurry of tweets over the weekend, the president doubled down on his controversial remarks at a rally in Huntsville, Alabama on Friday:
"Roger Goodell of NFL just put out a statement trying to justify the total disrespect certain players show to our country.Tell them to stand!" Trump tweeted on Saturday:
That tweet was followed by others:
"If NFL fans refuse to go to games until players stop disrespecting our Flag & Country, you will see change take place fast. Fire or suspend!"
"NFL attendance and ratings are WAY DOWN. Boring games yes, but many stay away because they love our country. League should back U.S."
"Great solidarity for our National Anthem and for our Country. Standing with locked arms is good, kneeling is not acceptable. Bad ratings!"
"Courageous Patriots have fought and died for our great American Flag --- we MUST honor and respect it! MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!"
"Sports fans should never condone players that do not stand proud for their National Anthem or their Country. NFL should change policy!"
The president also retweeted a few messages from Americans who agree with him.
At the rally in Huntsville Friday night, President Trump was speaking about the "American values" that he shares with U.S. Senate candidate Luther Strange. "We're proud of our country. We respect our flag," he said. And then he veered into football, a game "they're ruining":
Wouldn't you love to see one of these NFL owners when somebody disrespects our flag to say get that son of a bitch off the field right now, out, he's fired, he's fired.
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, they don't know it, they're friends of mine, many of them, they don't know it, they'll be the most popular person for a week, they'll be the most popular person in this country because that's a total disrespect of our heritage, that's a total disrespect of everything that we stand for, OK? Everything that we stand for.
And I know we have freedoms and we have freedom of choice and many, many different freedoms. But you know what? It's still totally disrespectful. And, you know, when the NFL ratings are down massively, massively...
The NFL ratings are down massively. Now, the number-one reason happens to be that they like watching what's happening on, you know, with yours truly.
They like what's happening. Because, you know, today if you hit too hard, right, they hit too hard, 15 yards, throw him out of the game. They had that last week. I watched for a couple of minutes and two guys just really a beautiful tackle, boom, 15 yards. The referee gets on television, his wife it sitting at home, she's so proud of him, they're ruining the game. Right?
They're ruining the game. Hey, look, that's what they want to do, they want to hit, OK? They want to hit. But it is hurting the game.
But you know what's hurting the game more than that? When people like yourselves turn on television and you see those people taking the knee when they're playing our great National Anthem.
The only thing you could do better is if you see it, even if it's one player, leave the stadium. I guarantee things will stop, things will stop. Just pick up and leave, pick up and leave.
Not the same game anymore anyway.