Freedom of expression was on full display last night at Lambeau Field in Green Bay before the Packers hosted the Chicago Bears.
Players and coaches on both teams did what they said they would do and stood for the national anthem with arms linked. But quarterback Aaron Rodgers’ call for fans to do the same largely fell on deaf ears as most did not. In fact, while all fans stood for the anthem, many chanted “USA! USA!”
After the game, Rodgers said, “Well, it was an invitation to join us. The beauty is, it’s a free country so they can choose to do it or not.” He added, “The messaging of this, unfortunately, continues to need to be redirected. It’s never been about the national anthem, it’s never been about the military. We’re all patriotic in the locker room. We love our troops. This is about something bigger than that: an invitation to show unity in the face of some divisiveness from the top in this country, and I’m proud of our guys. This has been a galvanizing situation for us.”
Rodgers said that in addition to the “USA! USA!” chants, players could also hear some negative things shouted at the players. (USA Today)
- Everyone chose their own way to handle the playing of the national anthem and that’s what makes this America.
- Asking fans to link arms may sound nice but you can’t expect people to be willing to touch complete strangers.
- The anthem demonstration has taken on a whole new meaning and seems to have less to do with why Colin Kaepernick started it.
- At least everyone stood.