New York Giants players and their staff apparently made a point to stand for the National Anthem before their preseason game against the New York Jets on Saturday night, according to a local reporter.
On social media websites, some users were sharing a picture of the entire team and staff standing at attention while “The Star Spangled Banner” plays. Tara Sullivan, a reporter for New Jersey’s The Record, posted the image to her Twitter page, saying there was a “pretty deliberate sideline for the Giants during the anthem tonight. All players and staff standing.”
It comes a day after San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick refused to stand for the National Anthem, saying the flag is a representation of a “country that oppresses black people and people of color.”
He’s received heavy public backlash in the wake of his comments, and some 49ers fans burned his jersey. Photos and videos of fans’ jersey burning were also shared on social media websites.
Several NFL players also reacted to Kaepernick’s comments.
Victor Cruz, a wide receiver for the Giants, released his own statement, saying, “You’ve got to respect the flag.”
He told USA Today: “I think, personally, the flag is the flag. Regardless of how you feel about the things that are going on in America today and the things that are going on across the world with gun violence and things like that. You’ve got to respect the flag and stand up with your teammates. It’s bigger than just you, in my opinion. I think you go up there. You’re with your team, and you pledge your allegiance to the flag and the national anthem as a team, and then you go about your business, whatever your beliefs are. Colin is his own man. He decided to sit down and sit out and that’s his prerogative. But from a personal standpoint, I think you have to stand out there with your team and understand that this is a game and understand that what’s going on in the country.”
The 49ers said they have no plans to discipline him.
(H/T – IJR)