Donald Trump once criticized NFL players for not “standing proudly” during the national anthem, but the president clearly doesn’t practice what he preaches. President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump, 49, hosted a private Super Bowl watch party at the Trump International Golf Club in Palm Beach, Florida, where a guest caught them on camera arriving at the event as the game began. In the partygoer’s video, shared with the Miami Herald, attendees at the bash, including the first lady and their 13-year-old son, Barron Trump, are standing at attention as “The Star-Spangled Banner” plays, with their hands over their hearts. The president is doing neither.
Instead, the nearly 20-second video, which you can watch below, shows Trump fidgeting, adjusting his jacket, pointing around the room, and, as the national anthem reached its crescendo, waving his fingers as if conducting an orchestra. It’s bizarre behavior, especially considering Trump’s frequent claims that kneeling during the national anthem, instead of standing at attention, is unpatriotic. “You have to stand, proudly, for the national anthem or you shouldn’t be playing,” Trump said in a 2018 interview with Fox and Friends. “You shouldn’t be there. Maybe you shouldn’t be in the country.”
Trump started to continuously tweet about the “issue” after San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick‘s first protest in 2016. Kaepernick, 32, began kneeling during the national anthem at games to protest police brutality and racism. Other players in the league soon joined him, kneeling or bowing their heads during the pre-game routine. Trump went so far as to blame the activists for NFL’s supposedly low TV ratings.
“The NFL players are at it again — taking a knee when they should be standing proudly for the National Anthem,” Trump tweeted following an August 2018 Miami Dolphins game. “Numerous players, from different teams, wanted to show their “outrage” at something that most of them are unable to define. They make a fortune doing what they love… Be happy, be cool! A football game, that fans are paying soooo much money to watch and enjoy, is no place to protest. Most of that money goes to the players anyway. Find another way to protest. Stand proudly for your National Anthem or be Suspended Without Pay!”
Beyonce and Jay-Z were just criticized for sitting down as Demi Lovato sang the national anthem at the Super Bowl, while Trump was messing around just an hour away.