Seahawks link arms during national anthem while 4 Dolphins kneel
As expected, the Seahawks linked arms during the national anthem as a sign of unity on the 15th anniversary of 9/11, while some members of the Miami Dolphins knelt on the opposite side of the field, joining the movement of silent protests by NFL players started by 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick in the preseason.
Seahawks wide receiver Doug Baldwin tweeted a video Sunday revealing the team’s plan to interlock arms, narrating a video over headshots of each player, saying, “We are a team comprised of individuals with diverse backgrounds, and as a team we have chosen to stand and interlock arms in unity. We honor those who have fought for the freedom we cherish and we stand to ensure the riches of freedom and the security of justice for all people. Progress can and will be made only if we stand together.”
The tweet included this message in text: “Martin Luther King Jr. once famously said ‘Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.’ #BuildABridge”
Cornerback Jeremy Lane, who followed 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick’s lead by sitting during the anthem in Seattle’s final preseason game to protest police brutality against African-Americans, stood along with each other member of the Seahawks during their show of unity.
Miami’s Arian Foster, Michael Thomas, Kenny Stills and Jelani Jenkins knelt.
A field-sized American flag was unfurled at CenturyLink Field covering everything but the end zone, and President Barack Obama spoke in a taped video prior to the anthem to commemorate the 15th anniversary of 9/11.
— Brady Henderson (@BradyHenderson) September 11, 2016
While multiple members of law enforcement declined to comment about protests outside of CenturyLink Field before the game, Det. Michael Whidbey, with the Seattle Police Department, said he appreciated the Seahawks’ plan of linking arms more than what had been done by Kaepernick.
“I like that more than just sitting down and not telling people (why),” Whidbey said. “(Kaepernick) didn’t really come out to begin with and tell people why he was sitting down. He just gave a vague answer. The Seahawks are actually giving a reason. The Seahawks are actually putting out a platform. I like that much better. … I’m not a big Colin Kaepernick fan anyway.”
Whidbey said he supports protest but that he also wants to see a purpose behind the stance.
“Have a solution,” he said. “Come forward with something else. Let’s build a bridge. Let’s get something together. If you’re going to sit there and say that police are doing something wrong, then what would you have us to do? That’s what’s more important than just sitting down at the national anthem. Give us some solutions, give us an idea of what you want us to do.”
Perhaps using Seattle’s blueprint, the Kansas City Chiefs linked arms before their game against the Jets, with cornerback Marcus Peters – a former UW Husky – holding a single raised fist at the end of the line throughout the song.