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#pounditTuesday, November 30, 2021

Michael Bennett on anthem protest: ‘You need a white guy to join the fight’

Kenny Britt Robert Quinn Rams

Several NFL players have decided to stand behind Colin Kaepernick in protesting the national anthem, but none of them are white. Michael Bennett and some of his Seattle Seahawks teammates would like to see that change.

When discussing the players who have either taken a knee or raised their fist in the air during “The Star-Spangled Banner,” Bennett said representatives from “the other side” are needed for the movement to make a difference.

“You need a white guy to join the fight. The white guy is super important to the fight,” he said, via Matt Calkins of the Seattle Times. “For people to really see social injustices, there must be someone from the other side of the race who recognizes the problem, because a lot of times if just one race says there’s a problem, nobody is realistic about it.”

Fellow Seahawks defensive lineman Cliff Avril agreed, citing Aaron Rodgers as an example of someone who could really bring attention to issues of social injustice.

“If somebody like, say, Aaron Rodgers got behind us, I think it would touch home for a lot more people,” Avril said. “At the same time, I see why they probably wouldn’t, because they don’t know what we’re going through. That’s one of those situations where it’s unfortunate.”

Doug Baldwin echoed those sentiments, adding that having a white player involved would get a new part of the population to “open their eyes and ears.”

We have seen white athletes from other sports (like this well-known soccer player) take a stand against the national anthem, but the truth is many others would feel out of place doing it. Seahawks kicker Steven Hauschka said as much, noting that he feels uncomfortable talking about the subject. He’s certainly not alone in that line of thinking.

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