The last few months have been quite rough for Drew Brees‘ reputation and public image. The New Orleans Saints’ star quarterback has been battered around due to his comments concerning kneeling during the national anthem. That painted a picture of him being ignorant and unaware of the intent for that action that is directing bringing attention to the social issues that the Black community continues to face in the United States. Through the process, Brees has learned much that hasn’t changed his stance in one regard.
Drew Brees criticized for kneeling stance
Following the tragic passing of George Floyd through wrongful treatment by the Minnesota police, it raised a significant push toward social change.
The conversation shifted toward Colin Kaepernick’s decision to kneel during the national anthem to bring awareness to those ongoing issues. It was during this time in early June that Brees made strong comments about his stance on kneeling during that national anthem as he was firmly against that action.
The 41-year-old aired out that he would never agree with someone that chose to kneel while emphasizing the belief that standing with your hand over his heart shows unity and brings the country closer to the solution. It didn’t take long after that for him to receive backlash from the NFL community and many other sports figures alike. Although his comments were rooted in what he believed were solid intentions, it showed a lack of understanding of the reasoning for kneeling.
Since then, Brees has actively moved toward garnering a greater awareness and understanding of the entire situation.
Drew Brees will continue to stand for national anthem
The last several weeks have seen Drew Brees embrace the opportunity to embrace a greater understanding of the situation further.
Brees has spoken to a great extent about his support and advocacy for fighting against the Black community’s social injustices. The Star quarterback recently spoke to NOLA.com, to which he voiced that he was going to continue to stand for the national anthem while respecting that decided to kneel.
No. 1, I will always stand for the flag because of what it means to me and to honor all those who have sacrificed, who have served and died for our country and all those who have struggled to move this country forward.
Second, I acknowledge and respect anyone who chooses to kneel or any other form of peaceful protest to bring attention to the social injustices and systemic racism that so many have endured and continue to endure in our country. I will always support and advocate for the black and brown communities in the fight for social injustices. Always.
Although Brees has elected to remain standing during the national anthem, that’s not a decision to criticize him going that route. Instead, what should draw attention is that is supporting those that choose to kneel. The issues that came about were his initial comments that he would never listen to someone that decides to kneel that received the criticism.
Brees feels a certain way toward the American flag and what it stands for him, but it’s the understanding of why another chooses to kneel to bring attention to social injustice.
Show through actions
It has been a rough past couple of months for Drew Brees, but it an opportunity to learn and understand further the intent of kneeling.
Brees looks to have shown a genuine interest in demonstrating sport for the Black community with the desire to be a beacon of support. The star quarterback has been a highly influential sports figure in New Orleans, which his voice holds a great deal of impact in the city and state of Louisiana.
It was a bump in the road for Brees, but a chance to become more aware of the issues that minorities continue to deal with daily.