Threats to Reggie Cannon follow comments about booing at FC Dallas-Nashville SC game

Reaction to the booing of FC Dallas and Nashville SC players by some fans for their kneeling during the playing of the national anthem before Wednesday's game at Toyota Stadium continued on Thursday.

After the game, FC Dallas right back Reggie Cannon, a starter on the U.S. national team, said the booing was "disgusting," and he and his teammates knew they were going to have negative push-pack from having a unified response in support of the Black Lives Matter movement and MLS's Black Players for Change, which organized protests during the MLS is Back Tournament in Florida.

On Thursday, FC Dallas owners Dan and Clark Hunt said Cannon received "racist comments and death threats" and Cannon made his tweets protected. MLS commissioner Don Garber said some of the comments made on social media after the match were "appalling."

In a media call with reporters, Philadelphia Union defender Mark McKenzie, who plays with Cannon on the U.S. national team and is also a member of Black Players for Change, said, “It goes to show how much work there has to be done. I believe somebody said this kneeling is becoming overkill right now. You know, that sums it up in a nutshell. The injustices and systemic racism, I think that’s the overkill. It’s disheartening, it’s frustrating to see."

McKenzie added, "It’s an eye-opener, it just goes to show how much work there is to be done. It’s not going to stop any of us from taking a stand, continuing to push for equality and equity. Ultimately, we have a platform to play football and influence change, shape the next generation to be better than we we were. Reggie has the support of players around the league, around the world, and I’m fully behind him.”

FC Dallas issued an unsigned statement early in the afternoon that "it supports our players and fans in their right to express themselves in a peaceful manner. The national anthem was played before last night’s match while the players were on the field which Major League Soccer requires when fans are in attendance. While we understand the decision to stand or kneel for the national anthem is a polarizing issue, we hope that FC Dallas can be a leader in helping our community accept diverse viewpoints in a respectful way as we all work together in the ongoing fight for racial equality."

Wednesday's game was the first of three makeup games FC Dallas and Nashville SC have to play because they were removed from the MLS is Back Tournament after outbreaks of COVID-19 in their team delegations. It was the first at which players from FC Dallas and Nashville SC could protest in solidarity with others since the killing of George Floyd.

With the return to play in home markets, MLS's policy is to only hold pregame ceremonies and play the national anthem at matches where fans are in attendance. FC Dallas is one of only a few MLS teams that plan on having fans in the stands. A Dallas crowd of less than 3,000 was on hand for the 1-0 loss to Nashville SC.

Cannon said that "we asked for no anthem because we didn't feel it was right for the anthem to be played at this moment. They ignored our wishes so we were gonna kneel regardless. If the anthem was going to be played or not. Unfortunately, it was played during these times when we asked for the anthem not to be played."

ESPN FC reported, citing a source with knowledge of the situation, that FC Dallas had asked MLS for permission to not play the anthem, a request the league declined. Since 2017, MLS's position is to respect and support the right of players to express their personal beliefs during the playing of the national anthem.

In his statement, Garber reiterated that Major League Soccer "supports players and staff who protest peacefully on behalf of equality and social justice" and the league "will not tolerate any abuse or threats" to them.

Later in the day, FC Dallas issued a second statement, this time from the Hunts:

“We want to be clear: We love and support Reggie Cannon. The racist comments and death threats he has received are repulsive and unacceptable. There is no place in our sport, or in our country for that matter, for the kind of horrific vitriol Reggie has had to endure today. Hateful or violent threats are never warranted — especially when they are directed toward a member of our FC Dallas family. We will continue to work together — with our players, our coaches and our fans — against racism and in the cause of equality for all.”

33 comments about "Threats to Reggie Cannon follow comments about booing at FC Dallas-Nashville SC game".
  1. Santiago 1314, August 14, 2020 at 7:14 a.m.

    In the Picture I saw on NY Post ... Not a Single Fan was Kneeling ... 2 Guys Sitting, That was It.!!! ... So, to Call your Fans "Disgusting" for Booing You, is NOT VERY TOLERANT... I guess Fans Lives and Views DON'T Matter To the Players... You all wanted to "Chicken Out" by Not having the Anthem Played, And then you Drag Non-American Players into Disrespecting our Flag by getting them to Kneel also... Not a Good Visual for a Sport already seen as a "Commie" Sport ... Players and League Owners make Choices; Fans make Choices also ... I won't be watching Any Sports that allow Kneeling during the Playing of The US National Anthem.!!!

  2. Phil Love replied, August 14, 2020 at 8:32 a.m.

    Try kneeling in a row of stadium seats.  It's not easy.

  3. Justin Anderson replied, August 14, 2020 at 10:52 a.m.

    All of the unnecessary capitalization and the use of "commie sport" are clear indicators that you're a MAGAt. Find your way back to discord. 

  4. P T replied, August 14, 2020 at 11:30 a.m.

    To call soccer/futbol a "commie sport" clearly shows your lack of interest or knowledge of the origin of a world sport and maybe it is best that you keep to the acceptable sport of your choice. 

  5. Raffaele Aquino replied, August 14, 2020 at 12:36 p.m.

    Bud don't watch this commie sport , why you ever watched I don't know. Go watch NASCAR or the Rodeo I'm sure there you will find good old boy Americans that will make you feel good!

  6. Santiago 1314 replied, August 14, 2020 at 11:21 p.m.

    I guess you "Newbies" don't know that I'm the one with a National "A" License and former Member Of US National Team... We worked too hard, to break Free of The "Commie" Sport Barrier, To see a Bunch Of Pampered MilLEMMINGall Snowflakes lead us OFF a Cliff and Back 30 Years.!!! ... And there was Plenty of Room in the Aisles and Empty Seats, If any Fan wanted to "Join In" in Disrespecting The US Flag and National Anthem.!!!

  7. Wooden Ships replied, August 15, 2020 at 3:57 p.m.

    Bravo Santiago. Unless you came after you probably played with many of my teammates from St. Louis. I wasn't going to post on this one or the previous kneeling article. The times sicken me, or should I say the theatrics of many of the younger-woke-lol group that has suddenly appeared on SA. Of course, Paul Kennedy appears to prefer the division to actual coverage of the game itself. I'm not so sure there isn't an injection of aliases since the Floyd death. Ironically, many of the members of the USMNT and USWNT are of fragile mentality too. Even before this period of unrest and criminality. Being a baby boomer, I've witnessed remarkable strides in decency. Is it perfect, no, will it ever be, no. It's akin to the VAR insistence. Nobody wants to be wronged and when wronged they cry foul and demand justice. It's too simplistic and life isn't lived in a book of theory. 

    It is not acceptable for one (Cannon) to be threatened and slurred with epithats. Again, for the come lately's there is no comparison from the 50's, 60's and 70's to today. For those of us that have had skin in the game of life, integration, combat-force protection, and playing the beautiful game when we were shunned and ridiculed by the traditional sports culture, I say your brave, lol, kneeling is so out of touch with people before you that have accomplished and sacrificed and YES, made this country better. I recommend you stick to things you really know about, whatever that might be. 

  8. R M replied, August 15, 2020 at 4:39 p.m.

    @Justin Anderson - seriously?? You tell @Santiago 1314 to find "discord" immediately after attempting to disparage with an assumption of "Magat"?? Hmm...dare I say hypocrite? 

    @Rafa A. -- "NASCAR" "rodeo" and "good old American boys"....I thought generalizing with cultural stereotypes was actually part of the legitimate definition of "Racist".  Is that not the case or is it only racist when such generalizations are directed at non-white culture? Maybe your ignorant post is the systemic racism @PT keeps posting about? The hypocrisy on this board is strong, unfortunately the common sense is not. 

  9. beautiful game replied, August 16, 2020 at 5:32 p.m.

    Thank you for your thoughts comrade numero 1314. 

  10. David Ruder replied, August 17, 2020 at 1:16 p.m.

    Kneeling in any venue during the playing of our National Anthem and honoring our Flag and the sacrifices that Americans have made in the last 247 years, including the death of some 700,000 Americans in the war between the states to resolve the issue of Slavery, Is pointing the middle finger at America. 

  11. Sean Guillory, August 14, 2020 at 8:21 a.m.

    Reggie Cannon or no one else deserves racist comments that were made towards him.  However, if anyone thinks telling people that they don't support kneeling is racist that's silly.  I'm black and I don't support it...period!  I also think Mark McKenzie does not understand what systemic racism means because he enjoys equality and equity just as much as anyone else.  

  12. P T replied, August 14, 2020 at 10:33 a.m.

    So how do you propose they/we address systemic racism - and as McKenzie rightfully notes there is a lot of work to be done -- as the racist comments continue to flood social media?  Maybe kneeling is not the solution but it is a symbol for change and justice  - let's remember that's the reason the MLS has embraced the BLM movement. It's right for these athletes to be angry as their attempts are met with resistance for change. 

  13. Raffaele Aquino replied, August 14, 2020 at 12:40 p.m.

    So what are you doing about it then? What part are you playing in trying to bring about change and make people aware of how racism is still very prevalent in the USA. Or maybe you think it's best just to go on with life and just try to fit in as best as possible and not upset the white majority?

  14. Diego Castro, August 14, 2020 at 1:07 p.m.

    Now that MLS players and coaches have decided to get behind a Marxist organization masquerading as social justice warriors, why don't they just piss off the rest of their fan base by advocating for traditional marriage, pro life, 2nd Amendment rights, and smaller government. Reggie can then play in front of 600 fans, make 300 bucks a game, and the league can go the way of the NASL. Alternatively, they could stay out of politics entirely and focus on the beautiful sport that unites us. Save the politics for your own personal time and don't destroy what has taken so many decades to build. 

  15. P T replied, August 14, 2020 at 1:15 p.m.

    Calling something Marxist does not make it as such. What does BLM mean to Diego Castro? Is social justice wrong if that is what it is about?  Unfortunately it seems like not much has changed since 1968 with Tommie Smith and John Carlos in Mexico City when they attempted to raise awareness to human rights. 

  16. Santiago 1314 replied, August 14, 2020 at 11:13 p.m.

    @PT... Just in case you missed it Earlier... BLM-Inc., Is a Marxist Communist Led Movement

     Don't Believe Me, Go look for yourself, the UTuber is Black:  YoungRippa59
     Hope you didn't get Fooled into Donating.!!!

    (NYPost 6-25-20) Patrisse Cullors "We are trained Marxists. We are super-versed on, sort of, ideological theories. And I think that what we really tried to do is build a movement that could be utilized by many, many black folk,” Cullors added in the interview with Jared Ball of The Real News Network." 
    “The first thing, I think, is that we actually do have an ideological frame. Myself and Alicia in particular are trained organizers,” she said, referring to BLM co-founder Alicia Garza.

    She wrote a Book on it: "While promoting her book “When They Call You a Terrorist: A Black Lives Matter Memoir” in 2018, Cullors described her introduction to and support for Marxist ideology."

  17. P T, August 14, 2020 at 1:09 p.m.

    By supporting the BLM movement. Buying from black-owned business, e.g., Live Breathe Futbol in Philadelphia. By supporting black businesses in my neighborhood: metro-pcs on 925 Broadway in Minneapolis - co-owned by black soccer coach who had ihs business destroyed in the riots. By donating to food shelves in the impoverished North Minneapolis neighborhood that has many POC who are suffering. By speaking out for those who cannot and providing medical care to those in these communities. It's not enough. Change is hard. 

  18. John Foust replied, August 14, 2020 at 3:33 p.m.

    Unfortunately the concept that black lives matter has been highjacked, and will never recover due to that polarization of the national organization and its stated goals (now "defined" as social marxism, thanks to the BLM founders admitting that marxism is their background and focus).  What no one seems to address is the fact that you don't achieve what everyone wants through government mandate or cancel culture - you change hearts, one at a time.  Otherwise we're talking about brain-washing.  And what I don't hear in all of this dialogue is any mention of God, especially the saving grace of Jesus Christ.  Perhaps that's the problem, since humans are so flawed and will never get over our collective imperctions without Him.  Will be interested in feedback from any non-believers' on this ... 

  19. Nick Ferrara replied, August 14, 2020 at 11:46 p.m.

    John Foust, I'm with you on your above comment.  You don't induce harmony through censorship.  All that does is invoke further discord and divisiveness.  And yes, we need Jesus Christ now more than ever before.  I do pray and do have faith that something good will result from this, even if it takes a while to produce it.

  20. Diego Castro, August 14, 2020 at 1:23 p.m.

    Now that we all know how virtuous you are, please advocate for your favorite causes on other forums and allow us to focus on and enjoy the sport of soccer. 

  21. P T replied, August 14, 2020 at 1:55 p.m.

    You ask me for what i have done for the cause and now you belittle me. I am here because of soccer and how it impacts people's lives and to support the sport throughout my community for those who don't have the means to pay to play. 

  22. Doug Broadie, August 14, 2020 at 1:58 p.m.

    You can't change the heart of people who are filled with hate and contempt. 
    I have been working for social change for not only blacks, but latino and women through my church since 1963 and we have a LONG way to go to accompoilsh that.
    I pray that people never close their hearts to change.

  23. John Foust replied, August 14, 2020 at 3:34 p.m.

    Amen Doug, you're doing a good work!

  24. P T replied, August 14, 2020 at 6:29 p.m.

    Thank you Doug

  25. Santiago 1314 replied, August 14, 2020 at 11:38 p.m.

    Matt 25 40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’"... Oh, I have a Ministry Liscence also... So you all can Save your Virtue Signaling For Someone Else.!!!

  26. Nick Ferrara, August 14, 2020 at 11:26 p.m.

    A fan booing a player kneeling is simply voicing his opinion, the same as a player kneeling for the anthem is voicing his opinion.  Why is the fan's opinion disgusting?  Is a fan who is not booing but is simply not kneeling for the anthem also disgusting because his opinion doesn't match yours?  It's hypocritical.  At the very least it distracts from the game on the field.  I admit I don't agree with kneeling for the anthem, but I support the freedom to voice your opinion, even if it doesn't concur with my own.  We need to focus on all the things that are great about this country and the people in it.  The media only shows one side.  Is this country perfect?  No, but it's a hell of a lot better than most alternatives.  Most of all, we need to keep it together, not apart.  Yes?

  27. Ken Fadner replied, August 15, 2020 at 11:34 a.m.

    Respectful silence rather than loud booing would be the appropriate human response to opinions with which you do not agree. It's like shouting at someone you are in a discussion with.

  28. Ken Fadner, August 15, 2020 at 11:36 a.m.

    More Americans support players kneeling as a statment than oppose:

  29. Kent James, August 17, 2020 at 12:47 a.m.

    The racist comments and death threats Cannon got kind of prove the need for the BLM movement.  Kneeling is a respectful act (people kneel a lot in Church).  Booing is not respectful, so the two are not the same.  Athletes sometimes feel very strongly about an issue, and use their platform to promote a cause they believe in.  If you don't like it, you're welcome to express your disagreement by not attending or refusing to watch.  Of course if that's what you do, you shouldn't complain about "snowflakes" or "cancel culture" since you would be doing what you accuse them of doing.  There are a lot of problems in the world, and kneeling is how these teams have felt they could make the world better.  They may be wrong but at least they have the courage of their convictions and are willing to take a risk to act on those convictions.  For that, they should be applauded.  We should all make more of an effort to fix what we think is broken.  

  30. Ken Fadner replied, August 17, 2020 at 11:14 a.m.

    Agreed Kent

  31. Bob Ashpole, August 17, 2020 at 1 a.m.

    Do you guys listen to yourself? A bunch of old guys saying the young guys have it easy compared to the old days. Where have I heard that before? Everywhere. The fact that your point is true doesn't help. Soccer is more popular today than 40 years ago. That is great and credit should go to all the past players. When, however, the subject is racism, I wish that we could show some progress, but I haven't seen any real progress over the last 40 years. Until Trump came along, racism was mostly underground because it wasn't politically correct. Thanks to Trump, racism is now politically correct in his circles. Trump has empowered racists to go public. The sad thing is that "race" is strictly a cultural invention. There is no basis for it in modern science.

    What disturbs me, and I am pretty sure it also disturbs all of you here, is that racism is still as much a problem today as it was 40 years ago. Getting wrapped around the axle with whining as well as the backlash to the whining is not addressing racism, and in my view complaining is a waste of time regardless of what "side" of the issue you are on. The reality is we are not on different sides here. We are all on the same "side".

  32. John Foust replied, August 17, 2020 at 10:48 a.m.

    Dr. Voddie Baucham has helped me understand a black perspective on race:

  33. Ken Fadner replied, August 17, 2020 at 11:16 a.m.

    Well said, Bob.

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