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The Pittsburgh Steelers have a controversy on their hands and it has nothing to do with what happened on the field.

The team voted to wear the name of Antwon Rose Jr., — a black teenager killed by police in Pittsburgh in 2018 — on the back of their helmets during each game this season. But in Monday night’s season-opening win over the Giants, one player, offensive lineman Al Villanueva, taped over the name and put in its place the name of Army Sgt.

1st Class Alwyn Cashe, a Black soldier who was killed on duty in Iraq and was posthumously awarded the Silver Star for heroism.

Villanueva is a former Army Ranger and received permission to make the change from head coach Mike Tomlin, but did not discuss it with any of his teammates — and some of them didn’t seem pleased.

“I was surprised by what Al did,” defensive lineman Cam Heyward told reporters Wednesday. “You’ll have to talk to him in the future, but in this country, we’re given the freedom to do and support those that mean a lot to us.”

Ben Roethlisberger added: “I did not know about Al’s choice for the back of his helmet. That’s his choice. That’s the amazing thing about the country we live in. Unfortunately, it is what it is.”

Tomlin defended Villanueva’s right to honor a different person.

Steelers LT Alejandro Villanueva has the name Alwyn Cashe on the back of his helmet

Cashe was posthumousky awarded the Silver Star for heroism after his death at 35 while on duty in Iraq had said ALL players’ helmets would have Antwon Rose Jr’s name

— Chris Adamski (@C_AdamskiTrib) September 14, 2020

“He did discuss that with me,” Tomlin said Tuesday. “And this is in line with everything we said about participating in elements of social justice this offseason. As an organization- and myself as a head coach of an organization- we are going to support our players in however they choose to participate and express themselves or to not participate or not express themselves, as long as they do so thoughtfully and with class.”

Rose’s mother, Michelle Kenney, wrote Tuesday on Facebook that she was unhappy with the change.

“Let me [be] very very very clear,” Kenney wrote, according to ESPN. “The Pittsburgh Steelers took a team vote. Obviously one person didn’t like the results so they chose to do something different. I have nothing against vets and absolutely appreciate everything that they have done and continue to do for us. But this one person showed us exactly who he is and obviously he didn’t approve of how the vote turned out. In my opinion; that’s for his coach, team and organization to address NOT ME! While he was so busy being negative what it actually did now forced more people to engage in this conversation… I’m going to use this negative press and negativity to motivate me to hold the Pittsburgh Steelers even more accountable!!!”

Villanueva made headlines in 2017 when the Steelers opted to stay in the locker room during the national anthem before a game in Chicago after President Trump criticized players for not standing for the anthem. Villanueva, who served tours in Afghanistan, decided to stand in front of the tunnel in the stadium so he could see the flag.

Pittsburgh Steelers offensive tackle and former Army Ranger Alejandro Villanueva stands outside the tunnel alone during the national anthem before a game against the Chicago Bears in 2017.AP

Villanueva told Roethlisberger of his plan at the time, but Villanueva later said he was sorry for putting his team in an uncomfortable position after pictures were seen of him watching the anthem on his own.

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Trump shifts focus to Pennsylvania to shore up reelection

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BREAKING NEWS: President Donald Trump nominates Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court at Rose Garden ceremony to replace liberal Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

President Donald Trump officially nominated Judge Amy Coney Barrett to serve on the United States Supreme Court during a Rose Garden ceremony at the White House Saturday.  

'Today is it my pleasure to nominate one of our nation's most brilliant and gifted legal minds,' Trump said, making his nomination official as Barrett stood to his side. 

Barrett had been a leading contender for the nomination, having been considered for the seat now occupied by Justice Brett Kavanaugh, who was confirmed in 2018. 

The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals judge had met with Trump this week.  

 Judge Amy Coney Barrett's name was leaded Friday night as President Donald Trump's Supreme Court pick to fill the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's seat 

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died September 18, giving President Donald Trump an opportunity to fill a third Supreme Court seat during his first term 

Judge Amy Coney Barrett is captured leaving her home in South Bend, Indiana Saturday ahead of President Donald Trump's Supreme Court announcement 

Judge Amy Coney Barrett (second from right) is photographed leaving her Indiana home Saturday followed by her husband Jesse Barrett (right) and her sons (from left) Benjamin, John Peter and Liam 

Judge Amy Coney Barrett holds the hand of her daughter Juliet as son John Peter trails behind. Barrett is a mom of seven  

Amy Coney Barrett brought along three of her daughters to her September 2017 confirmation hearings in September 2017  

She's a New Orleans native who attended Rhodes College and received her law degree from Notre Dame law school, where she later taught. She lives in South Bend, Indiana.  

Barrett's name as his official pick had leaked out Friday night, but the president remained coy.

'In my own mind, yes,' Trump told reporters at Joint Base Andrews when he was asked if a decision had been made. 

When Barrett's name was mentioned, 'I haven't said that.' 

'They're all great. I haven't said it was her but she is outstanding,' Trump said.  

Conservatives have heralded the pick as Barrett is the heir-apparent of Justice Antonin Scalia who died in February 2016. 

Trump spoke of the Scalia connection in his Rose Garden speech remarking that Scalia once said of the SCOTUS nominee: 'Amy Coney is the best student I ever had.' 

Barrett, who clerked for Scalia, shares his belief in an originalist interpretation of the U.S. Constitution. 

White House staff readies the Rose Garden Saturday for President Donald Trump's 5 p.m. announcement of a new Supreme Court justice 

If her nomination is successful, it will give the Supreme Court a hard jerk to the right, as she'll be replacing the court's most liberal member, the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died September 18. 

Liberals fear that Barrett could chip away the ability for women to get a legal abortion, as the landmark 1973 case Roe v. Wade revolved around a right to privacy, which isn't explicitly outlined in the U.S. Constitution.   

Barrett would also be replacing a Jewish member of the court with a devout Catholic, bringing the number of Catholics on the bench to six. 

Overall, there are nine Supreme Court justices. 

Barrett's faith will likely play a role in her forthcoming Judiciary Committee hearings. 

She's a member of the People of Praise, a small Catholic group that teaches husbands are the heads of the family. 

The group was inaccurately reported to be the inspiration for Margaret Atwood's 'The Handmaid's Tale,' which is now a popular television show because the term 'handmaid' was used to describe a member's personal adviser, if that adviser was female. 

Members of the group also swear a loyalty oath, which some legal scholars have found problematic because they raise questions about a judge's impartiality and independence. 

During her 2017 confirmation hearings for a seat on the Chicago-based 7th Circuit, Barrett testifed that while she was a devout Catholic, those views wouldn't bleed into her decisions on the bench. 

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the top Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, famously told Barrett, 'The dogma lives loudly within you.' 

Conservatives including Sen. Orrin Hatch, a Utah Republican who has since retired from the Senate, knocked Democrats for deploying a 'religious test.' 

The New York Times didn't report her membership in People of Praise until after the hearings concluded, but before the vote. 

Democrats will likely bring it up during the forthcoming hearings.  

Earlier Saturday, Barrett was spotted leaving her home in South Bend, Indiana with her children.   

Barrett has seven children - five biological and two who were adopted from Haiti. She brought her eldest three daughters Emma, Vivian and Tess with her when she testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee in September 2017. 

Vivian and Tess as the same age, as Vivian is one of the children adopted from Haiti. 

Barrett also talked about how her youngest son, Benjamin, has special needs. 

Republicans have the votes in the Senate to confirm Barrett to the Supreme Court before the November 3 presidential election. 

While Republican Sen. Susan Collins, who's facing a tough re-election fight, and Sen. Lisa Murkowski both said they didn't think the Senate should vote on Trump's nominee before the election, several other swing votes indicated they would - giving the president the numbers he needs. 

Democrats have called Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell a hypocrite because he refused to hold a Senate floor vote on President Barack Obama's final Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland, who was picked to fill Scalia's seat in March 2016. 

McConnell said it was too close to the 2016 presidential election and the American people should get the opportunity to weigh in.  

This was echoed by Judiciary Committee Chairman Sen. Lindsey Graham who said he wouldn't push through a nominee in the months leading up to the 2020 presidential election, suggesting a new precedent had been set. 

Graham, however, reversed course, pointing to the brutal 2018 battle to get Kavanaugh on the court. 

Kavanaugh was accused by Christine Blasey Ford of sexually assaulting her when they were teens. 

Graham fiercely defended Kavanaugh during the hearings. 

Kavanaugh still made it on the Supreme Court with a 50 to 48 vote.  

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