Earlier this month, Drew Brees opened up about his stance on kneeling during the national anthem, saying he disagrees with anyone who participates in the protest as he feels they’re “disrespecting” the American flag.
After facing immediate backlash, Brees made several public apologies.
Taking back his comments, Brees backtracked, stating that his words were “insensitive and completely missed the mark on the issues we are facing right now as a country.”
Now, Donald Trump, who originally sided with Brees’ comments, is shaming the NFL player for apologizing.
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I would like to apologize to my friends, teammates, the City of New Orleans, the black community, NFL community and anyone I hurt with my comments yesterday. In speaking with some of you, it breaks my heart to know the pain I have caused. In an attempt to talk about respect, unity, and solidarity centered around the American flag and the national anthem, I made comments that were insensitive and completely missed the mark on the issues we are facing right now as a country. They lacked awareness and any type of compassion or empathy. Instead, those words have become divisive and hurtful and have misled people into believing that somehow I am an enemy. This could not be further from the truth, and is not an accurate reflection of my heart or my character. This is where I stand: I stand with the black community in the fight against systemic racial injustice and police brutality and support the creation of real policy change that will make a difference. I condemn the years of oppression that have taken place throughout our black communities and still exists today. I acknowledge that we as Americans, including myself, have not done enough to fight for that equality or to truly understand the struggles and plight of the black community. I recognize that I am part of the solution and can be a leader for the black community in this movement. I will never know what it’s like to be a black man or raise black children in America but I will work every day to put myself in those shoes and fight for what is right. I have ALWAYS been an ally, never an enemy. I am sick about the way my comments were perceived yesterday, but I take full responsibility and accountability. I recognize that I should do less talking and more listening…and when the black community is talking about their pain, we all need to listen. For that, I am very sorry and I ask your forgiveness.
“I’ve never seen anything like it, and I think he hurt himself badly,” Trump stated on his son Donald Trump Jr.’s YouTube show. “I was going to put out that he’ll regret that in the future years because you stand for the flag. You have to stand for the flag and the anthem, our national anthem. You have to stand. And I think the NFL’s gonna have a lot of problems if they don’t.”
This isn’t Trump’s first time sharing his disagreement with # ColinKaepernick’s kneeling protest. Back in 2017 at one of his rally’s, which took place in Alabama, Trump called Kaepernick and players who followed suit a “son of a b*tch,” stating that they should be fired.