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The Journal Gazette

Wednesday, June 06, 2018 1:00 am

Fox News apologizes for error

Claimed players that were praying were protesting

Associated Press

NEW YORK – Fox News apologized on Tuesday for showing photos of Philadelphia Eagles players kneeling in prayer – not in protest – during a story about President Donald Trump canceling a White House ceremony honoring the team for its Super Bowl victory.

The 33-second report aired late Monday with four still pictures of the Eagles shown in the background of Shannon Bream's narration. She said that the cancellation was due to “the national anthem controversy,” where some NFL players knelt during “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

“To clarify, no members of the team knelt in protest during the national anthem throughout the regular or post-season last year,” said Christopher Wallace, executive producer of the 11 p.m. Eastern program where the report aired Monday. “We apologize for the error.”

Fox tweeted a copy of Wallace's apology on its news account Tuesday and said the error would be addressed on the show.

Trump abruptly canceled the ceremony planned to celebrate the Eagles' Super Bowl victory after it became clear that the majority of players would not attend.

Eagles player Zach Ertz, who was in pictures used during the segment, tweeted “this can't be serious.”

“Praying before games with my teammates well before the anthem is being used for your propaganda?” Ertz tweeted. “Just sad. I feel like you guys should have to be better than this.”

Eagles player Chris Long tweeted Tuesday that “Fox News used the faith of Christian men dishonestly to push an agenda. That wasn't an 'error,' but intentional and strategic.”