New Orleans quarterback Drew Brees posted a lengthy response to the support from President Donald Trump for his controversial message about the American flag.
Brees has come under attack for saying that he would never agree with anyone disrespecting the American flag or the country. He has since apologized twice after many excoriated his message, including some of the players on the Saints team.
On Friday, the president tweeted that Brees should not have backed down.
“I am a big fan of Drew Brees. I think he’s truly one of the greatest quarterbacks, but he should not have taken back his original stance on honoring our magnificent American Flag. OLD GLORY is to be revered, cherished, and flown high,” he tweeted.
“We should be standing up straight and tall, ideally with a salute, or a hand on heart. There are other things you can protest, but not our Great American Flag – NO KNEELING!” he added in a second tweet.
The popular quarterback drafted a message on Instagram addressed to the president after his show of support on Twitter.
“Through my ongoing conversations with friends, teammates, and leaders in the black community, I realize this is not an issue about the American flag. It has never been. We can no longer use the flag to turn people away or distract them from the real issues that face our black communities,” Brees wrote.
“We did this back in 2017, and regretfully I brought it back with my comments this week. We must stop talking about the flag and shift our attention to the real issues of systemic racial injustice, economic oppression, police brutality, and judicial & prison reform. We are at a critical juncture in our nation’s history! If not now, then when?” he continued.
“We as a white community need to listen and learn from the pain and suffering of our black communities,” he concluded. “We must acknowledge the problems, identify the solutions, and then put this into action. The black community cannot do it alone. This will require all of us.”
Here’s more about the comments from Brees:
Stephen A. reacts to Drew Brees’ video apology after national anthem comments | First Take