President Obama has been busy, to say the least, at the G20 summit in China, but took some time to address a major controversy back in the United States: Colin Kaepernick’s decision to protest during the national anthem. Click through for Obama’s full remarks on the matter!
During a press conference at the G20 summit in Hangzhou, China, a reporter asked President Barack Obama about 49ers star Colin Kaepernick‘s controversial decision not to stand during the national anthem. Colin’s protest against racial injustice and police brutality has been widely criticized as being unpatriotic and insulting. But Obama is defending Colin’s actions; he’s got every right to protest, according to the president!
“In terms of Mr. Kaepernick, I’ve got to confess that I haven’t been thinking about football while I’ve been over here and I haven’t been following this closely, but my understanding, at least, is that he’s exercising his Constitutional right to make a statement,” Obama told reporters in Hangzhou. “I think there’s a long history of sports figures doing so. I think there are a lot of ways you can do it.
“As a general matter, when it comes to the flag, and the national anthem, and the meaning it holds for our men and women in uniform and those who fought for us, that is a tough thing for them to get past, to then hear what his deeper concerns are,” the president continued. “But I don’t doubt his sincerity, based on what I’ve heard. I think he cares about some real, legitimate issues that have to be talked about. And if nothing else, what he’s done is he’s generated more conversation around some topics that need to be talked about.
He praised Colin for his “active citizenry,” and said he’d rather have young people involved in politics than “sitting on the sidelines.” He hoped that some of Colin’s critics would start to see his points about justice and equality. He’s 100% right that Colin’s started a conversation. This is a national phenomenon, and more athletes are now following suit. When Obama gets back to the United States, perhaps he’ll be asked more about the matter.
HollywoodLifers, are you surprised that President Obama supports Colin? Tell us in the comments!