Did Dallas Cowboys player Lyle Stroman kneel during the National Anthem before a game against the Detroit Lions and was he ejected for it by the referee after which players Mo Burns, Damian Blackman, and Gene Johnson quit on the spot in protest? No, all of that is not true: the story was made up by a liberal satire weblog that loves trolling conservatives and Trump supporters into liking and sharing obviously fake news so fans of the site can mock them for believing nonsense. Nothing in the story is real.
The story originated from an article published by America's Last Line of Defense on September 30, 2018 titled "BREAKING: 3 Dallas Cowboys Quit After Kneeling Player Is Ejected" (archived here) which opened:
The Dallas Cowboys' Sunday game against the Detroit Lions started with a bang after the referees did their jobs and removed a player from the game -- for kneeling during the National Anthem.
The anthem, which was not televised per new NFL policy, is a time where we show our appreciation to the men and women who protect this country. But rookie Cowboys quarterback Lyle Stroman knelt in "protest" of our "racist" country.
He was immediately ejected from the game by one of the referees. As the crowd erupted in a mix of cheers and boos, three other players began to argue with the referee.
Users on social media only saw this title, description and thumbnail:
The Dallas Cowboys' Sunday game against the Detroit Lions started with a bang after the referees did their jobs and removed a player from the game -- for kneeling during the National Anthem. The anthem,
The Cowboys are indeed playing the Lions today but none of the players mentioned in the article even appear on the roster of the Dallas Cowboys, Only last week the same site ran another hoax about kneeling football players that got over 400,000 engagements on Facebook despite being completely made up:
Fake News: Broncos VP John Elway Did NOT Storm Field, Did NOT Fire 3 Kneeling Players on the Spot | Lead Stories
Were three kneeling players from the Denver Broncos fired on the spot by VP of Football Operations John Elway? No, that's not true: the entire incident was made up by a liberal satire website that loves to create content conservatives and Trump supporters will get excited by, so much that they will like and share it without reading the full story.
The site comes with a clear satire disclaimer at the bottom of each article:
the use of humor, irony, exaggeration, OR ridicule to expose and criticize people's stupidity or vices, particularly in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues.
If you disagree with the definition of satire or have decided it is synonymous with "comedy," you should really just move along.
The owner and main writer of the site is self-professed liberal troll Christopher Blair, a man from Maine who has made it his full time job to troll gullible conservatives and Trump supporters into liking and sharing his articles. He runs several other websites, including potatriotpost.us, dailyworldupdate.us and nofakenewsonline.us. Sometimes he is also known under his nickname "Busta Troll". A second man working on the sites is John Prager as revealed in this earlier story we wrote.
Articles from Blair's sites frequently get copied by "real" fake news sites who often omit the satire disclaimer and any other hints the stories are fake. Blair has tried to get these sites shut down in the past but new ones keep cropping up and he keeps knocking them down.
If you see one of his stories on a site that does not contain a satire disclaimer, assume it is fake news. If you do see the satire disclaimer it is of course also fake news.
NewsGuard, a company that uses trained journalist to rank the reliability of websites, describes trumpbetrayed.us as:
A website claiming to be satirical that publishes fabricated stories, run by Christopher Blair, a known purveyor of disinformation, that published fake stories about Senator John McCain after he passed away.
According to NewsGuard the site does not maintain basic standards of accuracy and accountability. Read their full assessment here.
We wrote about trumpbetrayed.us before, here are our most recent articles that mention the site:
- Fake News: Patriots Coach Bill Belichick Did NOT Fine Kneeling Player $1 Million Dollars
- Fake News: Broncos VP John Elway Did NOT Storm Field, Did NOT Fire 3 Kneeling Players on the Spot
- Fake News: ABC Did NOT Cancel Monday Night Football After Worst Ratings Ever
- Fake News: Ref Did NOT Get In The Game, Did NOT Eject 4 Kneeling Players
- Fake News: Crazed Liberal Burning Trump Signs Did NOT Cause Massachusetts Explosions