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Protesters in New York carrying a Colin Kaepernick sign. Photo: Ira L. Black/Corbis via Getty Images

For the first time, a majority of Americans support NFL players kneeling in protest of racial inequality, according to the results of a Yahoo News/YouGov poll released Thursday.

Why it matters: Public sentiment had been rooted firmly in opposition to kneeling during the national anthem since Colin Kaepernick first took a knee in 2016. But in the wake of nationwide protests supporting Black Lives Matter, the tide has shifted in the other direction.

The backdrop: In 2016, only 28% of Americans considered Kaepernick's actions "appropriate." In 2018 — when President Trump attacked players on Twitter for kneeling — that number rose to 35%.

By the numbers: The poll, which ran June 9–10, asked if it's "OK for NFL players to kneel during the national anthem to protest police killings of African Americans?” Just 36% of respondents disapproved.

  • Male (52%) and female (52%) respondents deemed this form of protest appropriate, with the younger respondents (18–29) leading the charge at 68%.
  • 77% of self-described Democrats agreed, in contrast to 20% of Republicans and 20% of Trump voters.
  • 77% of black people, 57% of Hispanics and 47% of white people answered in the affirmative.

Methodology, per Yahoo: "The poll of 1,570 Americans was conducted June 9 and 10 and covered a range of topics, including police brutality, racial injustice and presidential evaluation."

Go deeper

SurveyMonkey poll: Suburbs and the safety wedge

Data: SurveyMonkey poll of 35,732 U.S. adults conducted Aug. 31 to Sept. 6, 2020 with ±1% margin of error; Chart: Naema Ahmed/Axios

White suburbanites who feel "very safe" in their communities are more likely to favor Joe Biden, while those who feel only somewhat safe move toward President Trump, according to new SurveyMonkey polling for Axios.

Why it matters: The findings help illuminate how Trump is using safety as a wedge issue ahead of the election — and why he's fanning fears of violent protests bleeding into the suburbs.

Updated 2 hours ago - Sports

Olympics dashboard

🚨: China wins 1st gold of Tokyo Olympics

📺: The Olympic events to watch today

🎾: Athlete spotlight - Naomi Osaka looks to snag gold on home soil

👻: How the no-spectator Olympics could affect the athletes

🇺🇸: "What an honor it is to watch you soar," first lady tells U.S. Olympians

🥇: The six new sports at Tokyo 2020

💉 About 100 U.S. Olympic athletes are unvaccinated

Go deeper: Full Axios coverage

2 hours ago - Sports

China wins 1st gold of Tokyo Olympics

Silver medalist Anastasiia Galashina of Russia, gold medalist Yang Qian of China and bronze medalist Nina Christen of Switzerland celebrate on the podium after the 10m air rifle women's final. Photo:

China's Yang Qian won the first gold of the Tokyo Olympics, narrowly beating Anastasiia Galashina of the Russian Olympic Committee in the women's 10-meter air rifle final.

Why it matters: The first medal ceremony of the Games took on extra meaning after a year-long delay and other hurdles brought on by the pandemic. Athletes are required to hang medals around their own necks in an effort to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.