President Obama showed support for Colin Kaepernick‘s national anthem protests, at a news conference during his visit to China.
In recent weeks, the 49ers quarterback has chosen not to stand during the national anthem at games as a way of protesting against racial injustice. The president says in doing so, Kap is “exercising his constitutional right.”
“I gotta confess that I haven’t been thinking about football while I’ve been over here and I haven’t been following this closely,” President Obama said on Monday. “But my understanding, at least, is that is he’s exercising his constitutional right to make a statement. I think there’s a long history of sports figures doing so.”
He goes on to say that with the meaning the national anthem holds for the men and women in the military, it may be tough for them to get past and hear what his deeper concerns are.
“But I don’t doubt his sincerity.. based on what I’ve heard,” he added. “I think he cares about some real, legitimate issues that have to be talked about – and if nothing else what he’s done is he’s generated more conversation around some topics that need to be talked about.”