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Rapinoe rips Spirit owner after club prevents national anthem protest

Megan Rapinoe USWNT 35

Washington Spirit owner Bill Lynch thwarted Megan Rapinoe’s plans of a continued protest of the national anthem, and the U.S. Women’s National Team star is far from happy about it.

Ahead of a clash with Rapinoe’s Seattle Reign, the Spirit staff held the national anthem ceremony before teams took the field. The decision prevented Rapinoe from protesting by taking a knee during the proceedings, as she had done in the Reign’s previous match. The USWNT midfielder’s protests have come in solidarity with NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who has been sitting during the anthem to raise awareness of racial inequality. Rapinoe recently stated that, as a gay woman, she understands what Kaepernick is attempting to say, and has lent her support to the cause.

In a statement, the club said it did not want to “subject our fans and friends to the disrespect” created by Rapinoe’s protest. The Spirit went on to say that the club disagrees with Rapinoe’s attempted “hijacking” of the event for a “personal – albeit worthy – cause”.

“I didn’t hear it and I wasn’t exactly sure why it wasn’t played. It’s (expletive) unbelievable. Saddened by it,” Rapinoe said. “It’s pretty clear what the message is I am trying to bring to light in Chicago and what I continue to try to talk about the last few days and what I intend to talk about. Clearly with (Lynch’s) actions, it’s a necessary conversation. I think it was incredibly distasteful, four days before one of the worst tragedies we’ve had in our country, to say that I tried to hijack this event.

“It’s just really disappointing and disrespectful. I mean, we want to talk about disrespect, and me disrespecting the flag, he didn’t even give both teams a chance to even stand in front of it and show their respects. It’s unbelievable. It’s truly an unbelievable act to me.”

Rapinoe went on to say that she believes Lynch is “homophobic”, while criticizing the Spirit’s lack of Pride nights.

The USWNT star stated that several teammates said that they support her actions, even if she was unsure if they would join in the protest. Rapinoe says that she is hoping to have an open conversation about Americans dealing with oppression. As someone standing up to fight for equal pay with the USWNT, Rapinoe says it’s important not to forget that there are fights going on throughout America to improve relations.’

Rapinoe and the Reign return to action on Sept. 11 against the Spirit in Seattle.

hat do you think of the Spirit’s decision to play the national anthem early? What do you make of Rapinoe’s comments, and what kind of reaction do you expect going forward?

Share your thoughts below.

93 comments
  • Kodi

    “….he didn’t even give both teams a chance to even stand in front of it and show their respects.” Is that the problem or is that he didn’t give her a chance to show her disrespect? Additionally her statement implying that the owner is homophobic just because they don’t have a Pride Night is quite a stretch, not to mention a frightening way of thinking.

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  • RB

    This level of idiocy…well it is just truly boggling. The only ones in all this who have been disrespectful to others are those with the Washington Spirit who decided based on nothing more than subjective feeling to take away the opportunity of all the other Americans players and coaches and related staff present to express themselves during the anthem. And all because of one person who did not in the least infringe upon anyone else in that way. (Great job, Spirit!!!)

    In short, no one’s _feelings_ on this are really of any consequence, because we don’t just go on feelings in this country when running things between ourselves. We’re much better than that. If I just feel that you should behave in a certain way towards symbols like the flag, or that you should not be in a relationship with someone of the same sex or of a different racial background, or that you should be married and have children, like I do, or that you should go to this church and not that one, or that you shouldn’t dye your hair orange, etc, when whatever you do isn’t illegal or objectively harmful to me or others or any impediment in terms of my rights and freedoms and so on, then my feelings on your behavior just don’t matter. Nor do yours on my behavior in any such areas of life.

    And that’s an extremely good thing, for all of us.

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    • troy2

      Express yourself on your own time. The anthem is when we come together to celebrate being American. You have twitter and message boards to trash it any other minute of the day.

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      • Bryan

        My thought exactly. Lumping in standing for the anthem with all the other things RB listed also seems silly to me. One of these things is not like the others.

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      • RB

        Anthem time is my own time, and her own time and your own time and CK’a own time. Everybody gets to express themselves as they like, again as long as it’s not illegal or harmful or infringing upon others’ rights and so forth. That’s America. Welcome to it.

        If others expressing themselves in such ways is so disturbing to you, you can always stay away from the games or other public events. That’s your choice, too.

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      • RB

        How or why is one of these things not like the others, Bryan? (Remember, objective reasoning is required, not just feeling.)

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      • Ronniet

        I’m with RB on this one. You can’t say that you and military folks respect her and others rights to express themselves but pull this move. Grown people are acting like petulant children because 1 player chooses to do what their constitutional rights allows for them to do. It makes sense though because the majority of the people who have a problem with any of these protest are the same people whose rights are not being violated everyday.

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    • Alex

      “The only ones in all this who have been disrespectful to others are those with the Washington Spirit who decided based on nothing more than subjective feeling to take away the opportunity of all the other Americans players and coaches and related staff present to express themselves during the anthem.”

      Your argument continues to be flawed. Her and Kaepernick are only expressing their feelings/opinions when protesting, not objective reasoning. The reasoning that they use is completely objective in nature. That is their feeling and right, but it is also the private company’s right to play the National Anthem whenever they want. This does not make them homophobic or racist for not doing so.

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      • RB

        No, it’s irrelevant whether CK or MR or anybody else is using objective reasoning rather than just going on feelings (or whatever) when they simply engage in free expression in ways that do not break the law or harm others or infringe on others’ rights or the like. That’s the whole point: they get to behave as they please as long as they don’t do those things, and they don’t have to objectively justify it to anybody because it’s nobody else’s business. There is no obligation whatsoever for me to try to justify to you objectively (or otherwise) why I attend this church or do not attend church or dyed my hair orange or reacted however I did when the anthem was played the other day at the ball park.

        By contrast of course when we leave that individual choice/expression situation and begin to debate and interact with each other in terms of what people can/should (not) do — as is the case when others tell CK or MR that they’re wrong and it’s disrespectful and they should face consequences like not being allowed to kneel or even to play anymore and the like — it is precisely then that feelings claims and actions must be justified by objective reasoning. We use it as a base and means of determining action precisely because it is not just subjective.

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      • Alex

        “No, it’s irrelevant whether CK or MR or anybody else is using objective reasoning rather than just going on feelings (or whatever) when they simply engage in free expression in ways that do not break the law or harm others or infringe on others’ rights or the like. That’s the whole point: they get to behave as they please as long as they don’t do those things, and they don’t have to objectively justify it to anybody because it’s nobody else’s business. There is no obligation whatsoever for me to try to justify to you objectively (or otherwise) why I attend this church or do not attend church or dyed my hair orange or reacted however I did when the anthem was played the other day at the ball park.”

        You’re really arguing against yourself at this point. “(Remember, objective reasoning is required, not just feeling.)”

        “By contrast of course when we leave that individual choice/expression situation and begin to debate and interact with each other in terms of what people can/should (not) do — as is the case when others tell CK or MR that they’re wrong and it’s disrespectful and they should face consequences like not being allowed to kneel or even to play anymore and the like — it is precisely then that feelings claims and actions must be justified by objective reasoning. We use it as a base and means of determining action precisely because it is not just subjective.”

        Wrong again, I’m afraid. I’ve never said that she can’t or shouldn’t protest. However, actions only need to be justified in the court of law by objective reasoning, not by private entities.

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      • RB

        “You’re really arguing against yourself at this point. “(Remember, objective reasoning is required, not just feeling.)”

        Not arguing against myself at all. You just evidently are not seeing the crucial distinction between personal actions based on personal choices that don’t relate to others, on the one hand, and interaction between people to determine what’s appropriate or acceptable or not, on the other. (Indeed, I even used objective reasoning to point out that distinction.)

        As for the latter part of your comment, well you’ve repeatedly complained and said these protests are disrespectful to (at least) you and other men and women in the armed services, yet you’re now trying to say that you’ve never said they shouldn’t happen like this? Becsuse that sounds a lot like “shouldn’t”, to me. But anyway, unlike what either CK or MR have done, you have put the situation into the second category, one of debating what is acceptable or proper between people. The very fact of taking offense pushes their actions out of the simple acts of individual self-expression they originally were and makes the matter into something for the second category. When you cross that line, you cross into territory requiring objective justification, because obviously people’s feelings are just subjective and don’t apply across personal boundaries.

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      • Alex

        “Not arguing against myself at all. You just evidently are not seeing the crucial distinction between personal actions based on personal choices that don’t relate to others, on the one hand, and interaction between people to determine what’s appropriate or acceptable or not, on the other. (Indeed, I even used objective reasoning to point out that distinction.)”

        Wrong again. What’s acceptable or appropriate is more subjective than legal. If one’s standard of appropriate behavior is different than someone else’s, this does not invalidate their opinion of being disrespected. The protestor’s opinion is not invalidated as well, even though the other’s standard of appropriate behavior has not been met.

        As for the latter part of your comment, well you’ve repeatedly complained and said these protests are disrespectful to (at least) you and other men and women in the armed services, yet you’re now trying to say that you’ve never said they shouldn’t happen like this? Becsuse that sounds a lot like “shouldn’t”, to me. But anyway, unlike what either CK or MR have done, you have put the situation into the second category, one of debating what is acceptable or proper between people. The very fact of taking offense pushes their actions out of the simple acts of individual self-expression they originally were and makes the matter into something for the second category. When you cross that line, you cross into territory requiring objective justification, because obviously people’s feelings are just subjective and don’t apply across personal boundaries.

        It is acceptable to protest. I never said it wasn’t. I said that it can be perceived as disrespectful and that’s the same form of opinion that the protestor is using of not being disrespectful without the use of objective justification.

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      • Alex

        In conclusion, there is nothing wrong with saying that millions of Americans feel disrespected by a protest during the National Anthem.

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      • Alex

        Let me go a step further: Despite the meaning behind the protest, there is nothing wrong with feeling disrespected because of the act itself.

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      • RB

        “there is nothing wrong with feeling disrespected because of the act itself”

        I suppose that depends on the context. I mean for example in terms of psychological well being, there might well be something “wrong” (meaning less than fully healthy) with it, much in the same way it could be wrong/unhealthy to take it personally and feel disrespected if a guest shows up to your house with their hair dyed a strange color, or if you’re one of those who feel that same-sex relationships somehow tarnish your traditional marriage, or that people of different races shouldn’t really be in relationships with each other, and the like.

        In terms of the discussion, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with feeling that way, or expressing such a feeling, as long as it’s clear again that that is of no consequence. So here again it would be the equivalent of saying, “I personally don’t like coconut”, in that no one assumes that anything should then happen, and it’s clear you’re just voicing a personal opinion for no further reason. (Even then, you get into some tricky territory about why you’d even think you were in a position to comment in such a way on someone else’s personal choices, though…) But as I was saying below, I think the great majority of the time, the people voicing such opinions do that in fact because they carry the unspoken assumption that those are in fact of consequence and something should be done about the situation.

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      • Alex

        “In terms of the discussion, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with feeling that way, or expressing such a feeling, as long as it’s clear again that that is of no consequence. So here again it would be the equivalent of saying, “I personally don’t like coconut”, in that no one assumes that anything should then happen, and it’s clear you’re just voicing a personal opinion for no further reason. (Even then, you get into some tricky territory about why you’d even think you were in a position to comment in such a way on someone else’s personal choices, though…)”

        You do not get in tricky territory because you aren’t commenting on someone’s personal choices, except for the physical portion of the act itself, not the meaning or intention behind it. Again, you need to know that something can still be offensive, even though the message and intention was good.

        “But as I was saying below, I think the great majority of the time, the people voicing such opinions do that in fact because they carry the unspoken assumption that those are in fact of consequence and something should be done about the situation.”

        To assume is a waste of time. I think you can find plenty of people, including the owner of Spirit, who has clearly said that it was the act only that was the problem, not the message and CERTAINLY not because he is homophobic. Now, she is just being childish. Furthermore, I do believe that the message wouldn’t really make a lot of sense if she was representing the country while protesting against it. If she really believed in her message, she wouldn’t represent the country. Mohammad Ali didn’t join the military after becoming a conscientious objector, did he?

        Well, now she has accepted call-up to the USWNT. I am wondering if she even believes in what she is doing at this point.

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      • Ronniet

        so what is objective about gays being discriminated against, or unprovoked and innocent minorities getting gunned down in the streets by police?? These things are real, not biased, and certainly not made up. You’d have to be living in a cocoon or just straight up oblivious to current goings-on to think the stances people are taking up on such issues are objective.

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      • Alex

        “so what is objective about gays being discriminated against, or unprovoked and innocent minorities getting gunned down in the streets by police?? These things are real, not biased, and certainly not made up. You’d have to be living in a cocoon or just straight up oblivious to current goings-on to think the stances people are taking up on such issues are objective.”

        Look up the word objective and then we can continue a conversation worth having.

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      • Alex

        A lot of what Kapernicker has said has been influenced by personal feelings or opinions in representing facts. Prove to me that the entire country is responsible for a minority of bad police officers, then we can start getting into facts.

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      • Alex

        I know this is off topic. But if, we people of color, wanted real change in this country, we would be more informed before we voted. Instead, most minorities voted for Hillary, instead of Bernie… that’s not going to get you change, my friends.

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    • Alex

      ” It makes sense though because the majority of the people who have a problem with any of these protest are the same people whose rights are not being violated everyday.”

      Please stop assuming that everyone that has problem with this is white. It’s as if you are disregarding a lot of people here.

      “I’m with RB on this one. You can’t say that you and military folks respect her and others rights to express themselves but pull this move. Grown people are acting like petulant children because 1 player chooses to do what their constitutional rights allows for them to do.”

      As a person of color, I do not feel my rights are being violated everyday. They are usually being violated just on Mondays. Just joking…I know what you meant, but to say my rights are being violated everyday is extreme. I have questioned whether a police officer is just pulling me over because I was black or whether I didn’t get that job because of my color. However, I have no way to prove that initial thought. However, I have still overcame all of that and continue to get all these freedoms, that I wouldn’t normally have if I didn’t live in this country. I think that this country is GREAT and I am proud to serve! We can change this country and make it even better, but people really need to be involved in midterm (40% turnout) elections (congressional) and primary presidential elections (60% turnout) a lot more. If people really cared, they would care about getting money out of politics and vote for those with that objective. Do not let a minority of police officers or these protesters skew the realities that we live in.

      Oh, and I do feel disrespected by the act itself and would have done EXACTLY what the Spirit owner did. This does not degrade the message anyway.

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  • A.S.

    Wow, what an awful person Rapinoe is. Someone is homophobic because they don’t want to have a pride day? Really? Reminds me of the old Seinfeld episode:
    WALKER #1: Hey, where’s your ribbon?
    KRAMER: Oh, I don’t wear the ribbon.
    WALKER #2: Oh, you don’t wear the ribbon? Aren’t you against AIDS?
    KRAMER: Yeah, I’m against AIDS. I mean, I’m walking, aren’t I? I just don’t wear the ribbon.
    WALKER #3: Who do you think you are?
    WALKER #1: Put the ribbon on!
    WALKER #2: Hey, Cedric! Bob! This guy won’t wear a ribbon!

    BOB: So! What’s it going to be? Are you going to wear the ribbon?
    KRAMER (nervously): No! Never.
    BOB: But I am wearing the ribbon. He is wearing the ribbon. We are all wearing the ribbon! So why aren’t you going to wear the ribbon!?
    KRAMER: This is America! I don’t have to wear anything I don’t want to wear!
    CEDRIC: What are we gonna do with him?
    BOB: I guess we are just going to have to teach him to wear the ribbon!

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    • Bryan

      The team will be better when entitled vets like Solo, Rapinoe and Wambach (who is already gone thank God) are no longer around.

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    • Rob

      Replace “wear the ribbon” with “stand during the national anthem” and you have the exact same situation.

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      • Nate Dollars

        agreed. rapinoe has every right to kneel during the anthem, and lynch has every right to play it before the players appear (or not play it at all). her criticism is a bit ironic.

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  • Bryan

    She can continue to do whatever she feels is her right prior to these NWSL games but i’m going to be sick if I see her kneeling before a USWNT match. I cringe at the thought. She looked pretty washed up at the Olympics so hopefully she doesn’t get called in. As far as dropping F bombs and calling Bill Lynch a homophobe because he did what he wanted to do as the owner of his business, that just seems like a child tantrum to me and I don’t see how it promotes the dialogue she wants.

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    • Ronniet

      i wouldn’t say washed up. more coming off of major knee surgery and probably shouldn’t have been in Rio to begin with. Jill Ellis pulled a JK by bringing an injured player to a major tournament. I guess the USNT’s on all levels are on the same page in some regard after all haha

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  • Patrick

    Sure she can do what she wants but she can and should be punished by her private employer if so deemed necessary. Private companies are allowed to enforce their own rules and she has no constitutional protections with a private company, only governmental agencies.

    Say and do what you want and then take the punishments.

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  • Bryan

    Seattle’s next game is on Sept. 11 and they are planning a ceremony with some vets there. Rapinoe says she still plans to kneel and is set to meet with the vets before the game to make sure they know that she plans to disrespect them ahead of time, so shouldn’t be mad at her.

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    • Bryan

      I agree with that but there is a time and a place and Sept. 11 is not that time. Really, this whole thing would be better if we had smarter athletes (not Kaep) or ones that aren’t hot heads (not Rapinoe) doing something like this.

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      • johnnyrazor

        I don’t think we’ll have to worry about it since I don’t see how the Spirit don’t suspend her for at least one game for a profanity laced informal press conference bashing the owner of the team.

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      • Bryan

        Kaepernick appears to lack intelligence, yes. How else could a QB as athletically gifted as him fail to see the field? The Castro shirt, the Pig socks….both dumb. Inarticulate rambling….also dumb.

        And Rapinoe has a track record of being a hot head and lost her cool again last night, which tramples all over her cause imo

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      • johnnyrazor

        Just realized it was the other team owner. Still wouldn’t be surprised if she was suspended by the Reign or the league.

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      • dama

        You can’t agree with that and think “there is a time and place” which is dictated by people who disagree with what you are doing. That is the very antithesis of america. This whole thread with the plethora of nontolerance is pretty depressing. I guess I know how most of you would have reacted to Jackie Robinson too.

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      • Mike Z

        If we respect liberty, then we must respect the liberty of those we disagree with. Isn’t that part of what makes our country worth fighting for?

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      • RB

        “there is a time and a place and Sept. 11 is not that time”

        …or apparently Sep 7th, or 4th, or 1st, or Aug 28th, the other days MR and CK took their actions. I guess October 16th would also be out, after what happened at the 68 Olympics. Also of course Independence Day, Veterans Day and Memorial Day would have to be on the “not the right time” list. It goes without saying! And probably should add VJ Day and VE Day. Oh, and how could I forget Washington’s birthday and Lincoln’s, or if you prefer the modern approach, roll those together into Presidents’ Day…

        How many days are there that would be OK? Could we just get a list of when we _can_ protest? Might be easier that way. And oh, by the way, who determines on which days we can still exercise our freedom of expression, including to peacefully protest something we disagree with? Just you? Are you qualified? Or will we now have Protest Squads now, a la Palin’s alleged Death Squads in the realm of health care?

        Gee, now that I think of it, a list of officially approved OK situations in which citizens can peacefully protest — doesn’t that sound a lot more like some South American or SE Asian dictatorship than the proud and free democracy of the United States of America, with its remarkable Constitution and Bill of Rights and everything the Founding Fathers fought so hard to guarantee us all? Hmm…

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      • Bryan

        Wow, you sure showed me. If you honestly can’t understand how selfish it would be to piss on a special pregame presentation/anthem on September 11 I feel sorry for you. But please, keyboard warrior some more sarcastic snark to put me in my place.

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      • RB

        Sorry if the harsh reality is upsetting but as is clear from any reading of my post that is not just purely knee-jerk reactive, the point is that a lot more dates and situations would be involved, who is going to decide on what’s OK and not, and anyway, why are we going to do any of that here in the way that non-democratic societies do?

        Here you have just ignored those fundamental questions entirely and opted instead to try for distraction with for example the laughable claim that I (or anyone) might not understand the significance of 9/11. That is of course your choice but those crucial flaws in your view remain unaddressed, as a result.

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  • Super Nintendo Chalmers

    He sure “honored” the anthem by having it played when players from both teams were still in the locker room, punishing all the other players and staff from both teams for Rapinoe’s personal decision. If anything, he added fuel to the fire. He could have ignored her and let the “oxygen” burn out, but he kept the story relevant.

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  • Old School

    Now the owner is homophobic for expressing his own right and opinion on the topic? She just confirmed this “protest” is nothing more than a look-at-me gesture that has nothing to do with Kaepernick’s objective (misguided as even that is).

    The regressive-left continues to alienate people who would otherwise be sympathetic to such causes. Their mentality in a nutshell: “I have the right to express myself, but you don’t if I deem it to be offensive. By the way, I’m offended by everything and will accuse you of racism, sexism and homophobia if I don’t agree with you.”

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    • TheFrenchOne

      You nailed it. It’s an ugly double standard. Apparently free speech is good only when it benefits the “progressive” side.

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      • johnnyrazor

        So the right says people who don’t like everything in the US should shut up and leave (unless those things are healthcare, equal rights for all individuals, and entitlements), and the left says if you don’t agree with our points of view you are racist, sexist, etc… Sounds pretty even to me.

        America is better when both sides stop shouting about every difference and build off the similarities.

        Liked by 1 person

      • TheFrenchOne

        Johnnyrazor: I think a lot of people, including Rapinoe, forget that this idea of “marketplace of ideas” involves both sides getting to speak and be heard. And sometimes, the shopkeeper (in this case, the club owner) gets to close shop if he so chooses. Free speech includes the right not to speak and he decided he was not going to give her a forum for her speech, all well within his right.

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      • johnnyrazor

        You’re exactly right in your reply to me. I was merely pointing out that Old School and you by your agreement with him, are ignoring that conservatives are just as big of name callers when people don’t agree with their thinking you just may not notice it because you agree with their side of the argument.

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      • Old School

        I was merely pointing out that Old School and you by your agreement with him, are ignoring that conservatives are just as big of name callers

        …and we should talk about them when they make news or make noise.

        However, standing behind “But, the other side does X or Y too.” is not only weak but it’s a cop out. Either you have the moral high-ground or you don’t but you can’t have it both ways. Also, this conversation isn’t about “conservatives” or what “conservatives” are saying (or doing). In fact, it has nothing to do with that political leaning. That type of misdirection is becoming way too common of a trend.

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      • Ronniet

        Old, if you weren’t expecting someone to come back with a conservative jib then maybe you shouldn’t have started with a “left” one, which also can be construed as weak and maybe shouldn’t hold a place on a soccer forum. People don’t come here to talk politics and i’d go as far as to say they come here to escape them, especially with the impending presidential election being thrown down everyone’s throat right now

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      • Old School

        If he is, does it make it ok?

        So that’s the acceptable standard of discourse now? Slander people you disagree with character assassinations and unfounded accusations until they prove their not what you state?

        That tactic is actually being utilized throughout the country, too, which is disturbing. Surely that’s not what you meant, and I’ll give you the benefit of doubt that you misspoke or didn’t utilize a complete thought with your one sentence question.

        That’s a dangerous path, johnny & absolutely absurd if it was intended.

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    • RB

      “I have the right to express myself, but you don’t if I deem it to be offensive. By the way, I’m offended by everything and will accuse you of racism, sexism and homophobia if I don’t agree with you.”

      Apples and oranges: you’re equating personally directed disrespect or mistreatment of a group to something that was not personally directly disrespect or mistreatment of any group.

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    • Adam M.

      The irony here is that kneeling in front of a symbol is the way many religions express belief, devotion and acceptance. Its also the way one gets knighted in front of their Monarch. Kaepernick to his credit seems to have understood that sitting and not paying attention could be seen as aggressively disrespectful. But when NFL players gather together at the end of game and kneel in a prayer circle, no one thinks they are disrespecting God or religion. We are a big country with lots of ideas. Maybe its ok if some Americans want to express their hope that America becomes more perfect in a slightly different way than the rest of us.

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  • Clover362

    Ripone has a right to express her opinions. She does not have the right for every one to validate and agree with her opinions. She also does not have the right for a private actor to give her a forum to express opinions that actor disagrees with. Also deciding to slander someone because \you disagree with someone not coddling/validating you is the kind of behavior I would expect from a 3rd grader.

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  • guwinster

    This is incredibly stupid. If the owner didn’t want Rapinoe to publicly disrespect the flag, he should have told her he would cancel her contract if she did it again. That’s what a owner with real conviction would do, in stead he basically just cancelled the anthem.

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    • Old School

      This wasn’t the owner that employs her. You’re aware of this, correct? This was the owner of the opposing team.

      Liked by 1 person

  • johnnyrazor

    Megan certainly has the right to express her opinion, but as others have noted since she works for a private employer they have the right to tell her to do it on her own time.

    Many of us associate disrespect or desecration of the flag with the protest of the Vietnam War, maybe the first time this type of activity was broadcast if not first incidence. In that case yes the protesters were disrespecting the soldiers and veterans fighting and giving their lives. These athletes are not speaking or protesting against the military or American actions abroad. Do many veterans and active duty have deep affection and reverence for the flag, certainly, but they do not fight for the flag they fight for the ideals in which it stands. If no one in our history had stood up for the wrongs that have occurred our country would look very different today, God save the Queen. However, veterans certainly have the right to express their “disappointment”.

    Finally, protesting by not standing for the flag seems a little misguided as the problem with police and minority communities is a local and or state issue. The federal government has stepped in some cases, but most of the time it falls outside their jurisdiction.

    Liked by 1 person

    • AMPhibian

      I agree with you, but I would also add that even burning a flag doesn’t directly correlate to not supporting our troops. Most understand that troops don’t start wars, or choose when we pull out, or even what measures of force (atomic bomb) we use. That said, I know there are examples of some who also blamed and spat on the military, and I find those people disrespectful and delusional.

      There is a difference between not supporting a war or the people who decided to engage in it, and the service members who aren’t after geo-political influence, or oil reserves, but simply want to defend America and its people.

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  • AMPhibian

    Why do you people keeping talking about how this is disrespecting veterans?
    That is not at all what this protest is about, it’s been made clear multiple times.
    Are you trolls? Actually uninformed but just need a reason to release your anger/frustration?

    It’s about law enforcement not getting punished or even tried for killing innocent minorities too often. The boys club that exists in many of these institutions that prevents true justice.

    Most of the vets I know, including myself, aren’t offended even if we disagree.

    We fight/have fought for our democracy, which includes free speech and the right to protest. Citizens don’t use them often enough to any relevant measure, and it’s our duty to do just that, when we feel our country isn’t living up to it’s goals and promises in some way.

    Please stop conflating patriotism for nationalism, or a protest for a slap in the face.

    Liked by 1 person

    • dama

      Thank you. Intent DOES matter. Ask our entire criminal justice system. Or is that a slap in the face to defense attorneys everywhere?

      Like

    • RB

      “Why do you people keeping talking about how this is disrespecting veterans?
      That is not at all what this protest is about, it’s been made clear multiple times…”

      Yes, thank you.

      The culture of resentment is strong, however…

      Like

    • Alex

      “Why do you people keeping talking about how this is disrespecting veterans?
      That is not at all what this protest is about, it’s been made clear multiple times.”

      Your statement is misguided. Some individuals, including myself, have the opinion that it is disrespectful due to the values that they live by. This is a valid opinion just as much as it is Rapinoe’s opinion that it makes sense that our country is responsible for a minority of bad police officers in local jurisdictions. However, Rapinoe’s statement that the private owner is somehow homophobic because of when he played the National Anthem is absurd.

      Like

  • josh

    When all of this started, I fully understood and supported both CK and Rapinoe’s decision, being the bleeding-heart liberal that I am. But I am over it. If they had each chosen one moment to do this, and then moved on, I think that would have been meaningful. But this decision to perpetuate this “movement” is kind of childish. This is sport. These people have a platform on which they can speak their mind simply by their public presence. When you are on the field with a team, you represent more than just yourself. You represent your team, your organization, and your fans. They are not yours to speak for. Be an activist, stand up up for what you believe in, speak out. But do it on your own platform, not your team’s. And don’t act like your team, organization, fans, opposing teams, or league owe you some kind of “respect.” There are two sides to this… it is right to stand against oppression, but it is also right to right to express your patriotism and to show respect for those who have fought for it. This isn’t right vs. wrong. The anthem is not the oppression that CK and Rapinoe are protesting, and they need to stop conflating the two.

    Like

    • Old School

      I, too, and a self-identified liberal but over the past 4-6 years the extreme left has alienated me with the rise of the social justice warriors and their aggressive tactics masked as “expression” but are really nothing more than “oppression” ironically.

      The owner actually did Rapinoe a favor by taking this stance. Her objective, as she stated, was to “keep the conversation going”. His choice to not allow her a platform to do so, in fact, provided even more of what her objective was: keeping the conversation going by making headlines. Again, if it was about the “conversation” her objective was still met by making headlines, but she’s proven that isn’t her sincere objective.

      Of course, what followed was a temper tantrum by Rapinoe and loose and irresponsible accusations because she wasn’t allowed to shine the spotlight on herself. People not able to see her intentions, based on her actions/response, is a personal choice, because it’s incredibly evident.

      Like

      • Jack

        People have widely accepted being bigoted or homophobic is wrong and something you don’t want to be. So slandering people out of hand with terms like homophobic based or very little evidence really is pretty deplorable, People need to be far more selective in the use of these labels or they will just no longer have much meaning.

        Like

      • AMPhibian

        You’re using all these buzz terms on here like SJW and regressive-left, like that isn’t just grouping together a bunch of people you disagree with and giving them a disparaging label, so your world can fit into neat little boxes or something. Do you subscribe to Sargon of Akkad on YT?

        Both far sides of the spectrum are way too easily offended and hostile, and way too quick to discredit opposing ideas by putting labels on them that make them less than worthy for consideration.
        We’ve become so much more obviously divided and angry at any form of dissent this last decade. I think it’s in large part to the rise of social media and its availability and ability to keep us insulated. Some think it’s all Obama’s fault.

        Like

      • Old School

        You’re using all these buzz terms on here like SJW and regressive-left

        They aren’t buzz terms, but applicable descriptions.

        As for the rest of your post, Blaming Obama is an easy out, but I believe the rise of 24-hour media and cable news has made a direct and debilitating impact on the social discourse of issues facing this country and our ability to discuss them in a sensible manner.

        That and social media giving people a sense of entitlement that their own ideas are uniquely safe from criticism and making people immune to disagreement.

        Like

      • Old School

        People need to be far more selective in the use of these labels or they will just no longer have much meaning.

        Absolutely agree.

        Like

      • RB

        We’ve become so much more obviously divided and angry at any form of dissent this last decade. I think it’s in large part to the rise of social media and its availability and ability to keep us insulated.”

        I don’t doubt that but I think it is combined with a sort of mouthpiece effect: while people can become more insulated or advance into an echo chamber featuring an increasingly restricted range of views, they are at the same time encouraged to voice (even shout) their own views, whatever they may be, and rarely with any sense of reason necessary in their expression. So they are led to the incorrect conclusion that their feelings and reactions on something actually matter and are of consequence, even in cases which involve only individual, personal choice and expression on the part of others that doesn’t affect them and is not their business.

        Kneeling on the field during the anthem, or singing loudly or quietly or not at all, or wearing a flag pin, or dying your hair a strange color, or being single or married or in a same-sex relationship or going to an unusual church or no church at all — none of these are anybody else’s business. Sure, you or I can say “I don’t like what so-and-so did”, if we want to, but it’s about as relevant as saying “I don’t like coconut.” The view can be expressed but is of no consequence, despite the clear sense on the part of the speakers that it is. (“That’s terrible! Something’s got to change! They should…”)

        Like

      • Ronniet

        If you are referring to the BLM movement then don’t be fooled by a select few that have made it their job to incite riots and spew racism at folks that are not black, which is an irony in and of itself because it is one of the things that has drummed up their anger. The BLM movement are a collection of minorities who are peaceful, conscientious folks who just want to bring awareness to social problems that continue to persist in our country. There are bad apples in every bunch and those chosen few that i spoke of are giving the true movement folks a bad name.

        Like

    • AMPhibian

      Well said, and I agree with most of your points.

      I would just say that nobody thinks the stance of these individuals is a reflection on the beliefs of the team or fans or league, and them kneeling isn’t infringing on anyone else’s right to show respect to the flag.

      I want to say that they (MR & CK) have big enough platforms alone, as personalities, that they don’t need to drag their beliefs into the locker room and onto the field no matter how strong or valid, and that it certainly will be a distraction of some degree no matter how well it’s dealt with. BUUUUT…

      The matter is incredibly complex.

      If they did it once and stopped, you know we and the media would move on the next day to talking about what color a dress is. At least this is keeping the convo going? Not sure it’s a very productive exercise though. 😦

      Like

      • Bryan

        They both should have stated why they were kneeling, kept doing it, and then just never spoke of it again. THAT would have ‘kept the conversation going’. Instead, MR called some guy she doesn’t personally know a homophobe and dropped F bombs to the press.

        Like

    • Quit Whining About Soccer in the US

      Josh,

      I hear you, but would their protests draw this many comments on SBI if they did it on their own time.
      NO. It was effective. There is no denying that.

      I understand that many don’t want to hear that message and change the subject to you are disrespecting others. I understand many, maybe the DC owner, doesn’t want that message spread.

      But when you say, seemingly say, you are for the cause, but just do it once and go away, to me that doesn’t add up? I don’t understand that.,…how could I? Innocent unarmed blacks suddenly are done dying? No.

      This will spread as fast as Rapinoe jersey sales will spike. Many players will join in. Many fans will too. In my opinion this is a great thing.
      I will be buying a Rapinoe jersey, she should donate the massive proceeds with Colin K.

      If people are ticked off by this. Good, we now know where those people stand ( good pun there ) now.

      Like

      • johnnyrazor

        Quit Whining: We usually fall on opposite sides from soccer points of view, but I couldn’t agree more with your first paragraph. If these athletes stopped it would just provide fodder for those calling it a publicity stunt.

        Like

      • Quit Whining About Soccer in the US

        At least we agree on the important stuff.
        If you root for the Sounders now, we will agree on almost ALL the important stuff.

        Like

      • Alex

        “I understand that many don’t want to hear that message and change the subject to you are disrespecting others. I understand many, maybe the DC owner, doesn’t want that message spread.”

        The message and intention is good. However, this does not mean that people’s opinions are invalid. The lives and values that that have been sacrificed and gained to attain the freedoms that some of us take for granted, including protesting whenever one chooses, is something that means a lot to people. It is their right to have the opinion that the action itself is disrespectful, just as much as it is Rapinoe’s opinion that it wasn’t disrespectful. Nobody is changing the subject here and I have not seen anyone make the point that they “don’t want the message to be spread.”

        Like

      • josh

        My biggest problem in Rapinoe’s case is that the clarity of purpose is over. With her response, she has taken what started out as a brave and frankly patriotic move, and turned it into a mudslinging sh%tshow. And it’s now all about her. “I didn’t get to do MY thing!” It would have been more powerful if she had just said “Look at what a stir this is causing, I’m going to stay committed.” She could have ignored this game, and looked to the next to continue to make her statement. Now the headline is going to be whether or not she will kneel at the next game, not the issue to which she is trying to draw attention. And the controversy over it all surrounds her entire club. Not just her.

        And the guys at the 68 Olympics didn’t walk around for the rest of the games with one gloved fist held high. They chose the most powerful moment to send a message, and left it there to resonate.

        Like

      • johnnyrazor

        Quit Whining: The Sounders are actually my second team, Crew in the East Sounders in the West. And since usually the Sounders are good and the Crew not very, I’m rooting just for the Sounders by this point in the year.

        Like

  • Scott e Dio93

    This cow (ripinoe) just want attention while insulting continue Service Members, Vets and non-natives that became American. Continue to insult my family, ripinoe, and I will to continue to insult you, cow.

    Like

  • That_Guy

    Can someone please explain what Rapinoe is trying to accomplish with these kneels? From what she has seemed to have said, its a nod towards Kaepernick. Kaepernick seems to be contesting police behavior towards colored people. So is Rapinoe agreeing with Kaepernick on the police behavior? She says she understands what its like to look at the flag and have the country not defend your beliefs. So is she addressing gay rights? Is she just pointing out that the USA sucks? And how does kneeling during a tradition aimed towards veterans solve any of this?

    Like

    • Ronniet

      Did you really just use the term “colored”?? I recall that term being used during the Jim Crow era, an era of segregation and unequal rights towards minorities. I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt and take it as a slip up but if not then so help me God you choose another forum to continue using that type of disgusting language. And yes, i’m “black”!

      Like

      • Alex

        I believe that colored or minorities is perfectly acceptable and should be embraced. As a black person, I believe the messages that we spread are more powerful if we do not divide each other by Black, Hispanic, Islamic, or whatever. Don’t let one black person, be the altruistic judge that he clearly isn’t for the millions of us in this country. That’s not right.

        Like

  • gillyking

    Megan.. your professionally contracted to play soccer for your team. Not to use your contract to exact political activism in that role. Also, your claims that your benefactor is homophobic just because he does not also actively promote your personal lifestyle is asinine. So Miss Rapinoe, just STFU and honor your contract.

    Like

  • Will

    “yaddayaddayaddayadda I yaddayaddayaddayadda I yaddayaddayaddayadda I yaddayaddayaddayadda I yaddayaddayaddayadda I tried to hijack this event.”

    How many times the first person pronouns appear in a short quote tells you something.

    Like

  • Cj

    She is selfish and want the attention. She is protesting for her own media glorification not for anything else.

    Like

  • Jon

    This woman needs an exorcist right away. She is possessed by her white-guilt-lesbian-superlord!

    Like

  • RB

    Both Spirit players and league commissioner Plush have now said they disagree with the actions of the Spirit owner. His players stress the importance of freedom of speech and expression respectfully demonstrated, even when disagreeing. the commissioner said he doesn’t have all the answers but would prefer dialogue to such sort of unilateral action.

    That Spirit owner sure doesn’t look much like one of the adults in the room…

    Like

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