In light of the Colin Kaepernick National Anthem “Sit In”… Rick and Steve take a look at how people treat the National Anthem.
Thursday night’s preseason game between the San Francisco 49ers and the San Diego Chargers will be interesting to watch, but not really for the football. Many will tune in at 10 p.m. ET to see what happens when the national anthem plays at the game billed as the 28th Annual Salute to the Military.
Will 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick continue his protest of the US flag by sitting during the anthem? That anthem, by the way, will be performed by Petty Officer 1st Class Steven Powell from the US Navy. And how will the crowd react to whatever Kaepernick decides to do?
The quarterback has said he’ll again refuse to stand, just as he’s done for the first three preseason games, saying he will not “show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color.”
History of Standing for National Anthem
The practice dates at least back to the Civil War era, when the “Star-Spangled Banner” — written a half-century earlier — first became part of athletic events.
The first documented example was in May 1862, when Brooklyn inaugurated its first professional baseball field. The “Star-Spangled Banner” was played during a pregame ceremony, and again “at intervals throughout the contest,” the Brooklyn Daily Eagle reported.
In the decades that followed, the song resurfaced at baseball and college football games, usually during times of war and social upheaval, according to Marc Ferris, author of “Star-Spangled Banner: The Unlikely Story of America’s National Anthem.” The trend continued after Congress made the song the national anthem in 1931, and through World War II, when patriotic fervor, along with the development of modern public address systems, made the song part of the everyday routine.