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Already, a growing list of Eagles are refusing a White House visit.

To many players, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue isn't what it used to be.

Already, a growing list of Eagles are refusing a White House visit.

After his big win, Philadelphia's Malcolm Jenkins was asked if he plans on visiting the White House — an invite traditionally offered to the players of every Super Bowl-winning team.

Jenkins is part of the Players Coalition — an effort by NFL athletes to take action on systemic issues and injustices facing Americans of color. With a White House occupant who's railed against athletes protesting police brutality and urged fans to boycott the NFL, is Jenkins on board visiting 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue?

Malcolm Jenkins. Photo by Elsa/Getty Images.


"No, I personally do not anticipate [going to the White House]," Jenkins answered on CNN's New Day on Feb. 5, which you can watch below.

"What message would you like to send to the president?" CNN's John Berman pressed the 30-year-old Eagles safety. "I don't have a message for the president," Jenkins responded.

He continued (emphasis added):

“My message has been clear all year. I’m about creating positive change in the communities that I come from — whether it be Philadelphia, New Jersey, Ohio, Louisiana … I want to see changes in our criminal justice system, I want to see us pushing for economic and educational advancement in communities of color and low-income communities, and I want to see our relationships between our communities and our law enforcement be advanced. That’s what myself and my peers have been pushing for for the last two years, and that’s what I’ll continue to do."

Jenkins has joined a growing list of Eagles refusing to visit the White House with its current occupant in office.

Wide receiver Torrey Smith told reporters last week that, should the Eagles be fortunate enough to win the Super Bowl, he would not be going.

"We read the news just like everyone else," said Smith, noting that, while he understands some people may take offense to players protesting social injustice, their assumptions about the protests are flawed. "They call it the anthem protest — we're not protesting the anthem. It's a protest during the anthem."

Torrey Smith. Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images.

Eagles defensive end Chris Long also dismissed a possible White House invitation last week on the podcast Pardon My Take. A vocal critic of Trump who refused to visit the White House last year when he played for the Super Bowl-winning New England Patriots, Long made it clear that his opinion of the president hasn't budged much since last February.

"No, I'm not going to the White House," he said. "Are you kidding me?"

Chris Long. Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images.

While Long hasn't protested the anthem personally, he has publicly supported the players who've done so.

"I play in a league that's 70% black, and my peers — guys I come to work with, guys I respect who are very socially aware and are intellectual guys," he told ESPN in 2016. "If they identify something that they think is worth putting their reputations on the line, creating controversy, I'm going to listen to those guys."

Maybe calling protesting players "sons of bitches" wasn't the best way to move the country forward on this issue after all, Mr. Trump.

So far, these Eagles players have said they're not going to the White House.

  • Chris Long
  • Torrey Smith
  • Malcolm Jenkins

This article may be updated.

Courtesy of Verizon
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If someone were to say "video games" to you, what are the first words that come to mind? Whatever words you thought of (fun, exciting, etc.), we're willing to guess "healthy" or "mental health tool" didn't pop into your mind.

And yet… it turns out they are. Especially for Veterans.

How? Well, for one thing, video games — and virtual reality more generally — are also more accessible and less stigmatized to veterans than mental health treatment. In fact, some psychiatrists are using virtual reality systems for this reason to treat PTSD.

Secondly, video games allow people to socialize in new ways with people who share common interests and goals. And for Veterans, many of whom leave the military feeling isolated or lonely after they lose the daily camaraderie of their regiment, that socialization is critical to their mental health. It gives them a virtual group of friends to talk with, connect to, and relate to through shared goals and interests.

In addition, according to a 2018 study, since many video games simulate real-life situations they encountered during their service, it makes socialization easier since they can relate to and find common ground with other gamers while playing.

This can help ease symptoms of depression, anxiety, and even PTSD in Veterans, which affects 20% of the Veterans who have served since 9/11.

Watch here as Verizon dives into the stories of three Veteran gamers to learn how video games helped them build community, deal with trauma and have some fun.

Band of Gamers www.youtube.com

Video games have been especially beneficial to Veterans since the beginning of the pandemic when all of us — Veterans included — have been even more isolated than ever before.

And that's why Verizon launched a challenge last year, which saw $30,000 donated to four military charities.

And this year, they're going even bigger by launching a new World of Warships charity tournament in partnership with Wargaming and Wounded Warrior Project called "Verizon Warrior Series." During the tournament, gamers will be able to interact with the game's iconic ships in new and exciting ways, all while giving back.

Together with these nonprofits, the tournament will welcome teams all across the nation in order to raise money for military charities helping Veterans in need. There will be a $100,000 prize pool donated to these charities, as well as donation drives for injured Veterans at every match during the tournament to raise extra funds.

Verizon is also providing special discounts to Those Who Serve communities, including military and first responders, and they're offering a $75 in-game content military promo for World of Warships.

Tournament finals are scheduled for August 8, so be sure to tune in to the tournament and donate if you can in order to give back to Veterans in need.

Courtesy of Verizon

Ready for the weekend? Of course, you are. Here's our weekly dose of good vibes to help you shed the stresses of the workweek and put yourself in a great frame of mind.

These 10 stories made us happy this week because they feature amazing creativity, generosity, and one super-cute fish.

1. Diver befriends a fish with the cutest smile

Hawaiian underwater photographer Yuki Nakano befriended a friendly porcupine fish and now they hang out regularly.

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