San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick is known for speaking his mind on Twitter, but now he’s taking his politics to the playing field.
Kaepernick made waves after a reporter noticed that he was not standing during the national anthem Friday evening, in a preseason game against the Green Bay Packers.
The quarterback later told NFL Media that the move was intentional. "I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color,” Kaepernick said.
Mike Garafolo of NFL Network tweeted that Kaepernick has sat during the national anthem before.
The 49ers released a statement about the incident:
The national anthem is and always will be a special part of the pre-game ceremony. It is an opportunity to honor our country and reflect on the great liberties we are afforded as its citizens. In respecting such American principles as freedom of religion and freedom of expression, we recognize the right of an individual to choose to participate, or not, in our celebration of the national anthem.
The NFL also released a statement, saying that players are encouraged but not required to stand for the national anthem.