During a press conference at the G20 summit meeting in Hangzhou, President Barack Obama defended Colin Kaepernick and said he was “just exercising his constitutional right” when he refused to stand for the mational anthem. Technically, the President is right. The Constitution through the First Amendment provides for the freedom of speech.
“As a general manner, when it comes to the flag, and the national anthem and the meaning that holds for our men and woman in uniform, and those that fought for us, that is a tough thing for them to get passed, but I don’t doubt his sincerity. I think he cares about some real legitimate issues that have to be talked about,” Obama said.
But, in terms, of optics, Obama is already receiving quite a bit of feedback from both sides about his decision to speak out.
— Eugene Scott (@Eugene_Scott) September 5, 2016
— Kid Brightwillow (@KidBrightwillow) September 5, 2016
BREAKING: Obama: Colin Kaepernick ‘exercising his constitutional right’ not to stand for national anthem at football game.
— The Associated Press (@AP) September 5, 2016
Last month, the quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers refused to stand during the National Anthem “I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color. To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder,” Kaepernick said.