Commanders pay Jack Del Rio $100,000 for dusty Jan. 6 comments

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Commanders pay Jack Del Rio $100,000 for dusty Jan. 6 comments

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Commanders Coach Ron Rivera on Friday fined defense coordinator Jack Del Rio $100,000 for comments in which the coach downplayed the Jan. 6 riot in the US Capitol as “dustiness” and likened it to the racist protests that were taking place followed the 2020 killing of George Floyd.

In a statement released by the team, Rivera said he met with Del Rio Friday morning to discuss his comments two days earlier and Del Rio apologized.

“Coach Del Rio has apologized for his comments Wednesday, and he understands the difference between the events of that dark day and the peaceful protests that are a hallmark of our democracy,” Rivera’s statement said. “He has the right to speak his mind as a citizen of the United States, and it is certainly his constitutional right to do so. However, words have consequences and his words hurt many in our community. I want to make it clear that our organization will not tolerate equivalence between those who called for justice after the murder of George Floyd and the actions on January 6th of those who attempted to overthrow our government.”

Svrluga: Jack Del Rio can choose his words. Commanders can choose their trainers.

The fine will be donated to the United States Capitol Police Memorial Fund, which supports families of police officers who have been injured or killed in the line of duty.

Del Rio, who has often spoken out about his political beliefs and ideologies on social media, responded to a tweet Monday questioning “the whole story” about why the “summer of rioting, looting, burning and destruction of personal property never is”. discussed ”, but the January 6 attack is.

When asked about the tweet by reporters after a team training session on Wednesday, he doubled down and said, “Why aren’t we investigating these things? Because it’s kind of hard for me to say — I can see it realistically, I see the pictures on TV, people’s livelihoods are being destroyed, businesses are being burned down. No problem. And then we have a cloud of dust in the Capitol. Nothing burned and we’re not going to talk about it – we’re going to make a big deal out of it.”

Speaking to reporters early Wednesday, Rivera initially declined to discuss Del Rio’s tweets, but said he was “not necessarily” concerned they would affect the dressing room. The team did not respond to requests for comment on Wednesday or Thursday.

The impact of his comments was swift and strong, with current and former players expressing dismay. An NFL player who previously played for Del Rio and spoke on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the topic, told The Post the comments were upset but not surprised “because I heard those for the last two, 3 Years. He was consistent. … People have died, and he likes to call it “a gathering dust.” ”

The player added that he would have trouble playing for Del Rio again “because he doesn’t support me as a person,” and said the manager would never have made those comments “if he didn’t feel like he had a.” A lot of it would have people who would agree with him.”

DelRio issued an apology on Twitter late Wednesday, saying his reference to the Jan. 6 attack as “dusting” was “irresponsible and negligent.” But his earlier comments made waves throughout the week.

Two Virginia senators said Wednesday they could no longer support legislation designed to induce commanders to build a new stadium in the state after Del Rio’s comments. The bill was pulled in its entirety a day later, and State Senate Majority Leader Richard L. Saslaw (D-Fairfax) cited Del Rio’s comments as one of the determining factors.

NAACP demands Jack Del Rio’s job after Jan. 6 “dust” comment

On Thursday, NAACP President Derrick Johnson issued a statement calling for Del Rio to resign or be fired. And Rod Graves, the executive director of the Fritz Pollard Alliance, a diversity group that works closely with the NFL on minority hiring, said Del Rio’s comments “go against the values” of the alliance and the NFL.

“His comments do not reflect the views of the organization and are extremely hurtful to our amazing community here at DMV,” Rivera said in his statement. “As we saw [Thursday] night in [Jan. 6 committee] Hearings what happened at the Capitol on January 6, 2021 was an act of domestic terrorism. A group of citizens tried to overturn the results of a free and fair election, and as a result, people died and the Capitol was damaged. …

“I have no doubts that after our conversation this morning, he will have a better understanding of the impact of his language and the values ​​our team stands for.”

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