And for the first time, we heard from Trump on Ross, the Miami Dolphins owner under fire from wide receiver Kenny Stills and facing boycotts of his exercise chains SoulCycle and Equinox over his financial support of the president. The mission statement Stills was referring to was Ross' RISE Foundation, which states: "The foundation is a national nonprofit that educates and empowers the sports community to eliminate racial discrimination, champion social justice and improve race relations". "The one thing I said to Kenny was - I understand kind of where Kenny is coming from".
Ross, a billionaire real estate developer whose company owns fitness brands SoulCycle and Equinox, is set to hold a fundraiser for the president at his Southampton, N.Y., mansion, where the price of admission ranges from $5,600 to $250,000, according to invitations obtained by The Washington Post. There has to be more communication, more conversation, more. just more communication if we really want to make change.
"Stephen Ross is a great friend of mine", Trump said in response to a question about the boycott. I wish he would have done that.
Stills said he's received five-to-10 death threats since posting the tweet. He was among the Dolphins players who kneeled during the national anthem as a silent protest to highlight racial inequality in the U.S. Trump was an outspoken opponent of players kneeling during the anthem.
"I've always been an active participant in the democratic process", Ross said.
He added that he likes to "engage directly and support the things I deeply care about", out of "deep concern for creating jobs and growing our country's economy".
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On Thursday, Stills doubled down on that argument. "It's important to me that the work that we're doing isn't just lip service".
SoulCycle and Equinox also issued statements distancing themselves from Ross and reiterating their belief in "diversity, inclusion, and equality".
"The tweet doesn't, like, put me against Mr. Ross", Stills said. "I fucking hate him", said Chang.
The NFL Players Association on Wednesday backed Stills, saying, "Few have done more for their community than Kenny". It's never been about politics.