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#pounditThursday, July 7, 2022

Tony La Russa offers strong response to Gabe Kapler’s national anthem protest

Tony La Russa looking on

Aug 22, 2021; St. Petersburg, Florida, USA; Chicago White Sox manager Tony La Russa (22) looks on during the sixth inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Chicago White Sox manager Tony La Russa has taken issue with Gabe Kapler’s national anthem protest.

In the wake of the tragic elementary school shooting in Uvalde, Texas on Tuesday, Kapler said on Friday that he will not come out for the national anthem until he feels better about the direction of the country.

While speaking to reporters Saturday prior to his team’s game against the Chicago Cubs, La Russa said that he agrees with Kapler’s concerns on gun violence. However, the 77-year-old disagrees with Kapler’s form of protest.

“I think he’s exactly right to be concerned with what’s happening in our country,” La Russa said. “He’s right there. Where I disagree is the flag and the anthem are not appropriate places to try to voice your objections.”

La Russa also said that he thought Kapler’s method of protest was disrespectful to servicemen and women.

“Some of their courage comes from what the flag means to them and when they hear the anthem,” La Russa said. “You need to understand what the veterans think when they hear the anthem or see the flag. And the cost they paid and their families.

“And if you truly understand that, I think it’s impossible not to salute the flag and listen to the anthem.”

La Russa is in the second season of his second stint managing the White Sox. His first go-round in Chicago was from 1979-1986. La Russa is a three-time World Series champion and Hall of Famer.

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