Justice Ginsburg: Colin Kaepernick protests are “dumb and disrespectful”

Refusing to stand for the National Anthem in protest, as San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick and now many others have been doing before games, is “dumb and disrespectful” but of course is constitutionally protected free expression, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg says.

“If they want to be stupid, there’s no law that should be preventive. If they want to be arrogant, there’s no law that prevents them from that,” she tells Katie Couric in a Yahoo News interview. “What I would do is strongly take issue with the point of view that they are expressing when they do that.”

MORE: Jerry Rice to Colin Kaepernick: “All lives matter”

AP photo/Ben Margot

AP photo/Ben Margot

Kaepernick has said his refusal to stand during the Star Spangled Banner is an act of protest:

“I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses Black people and people of color. To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.”

As controversy over Kaepernick’s decision spread, the NFL said in a statement: “Players are encouraged, but not required, to stand during the playing of the National Anthem.”

Reader Comments 0

112 comments
Antionette Mckenney
Antionette Mckenney

I wonder how she feels about the police killing unarmed Black Americans as well as police brutality and racism in America

Bob Hunt
Bob Hunt

THIS FLAG ...THIS COUNTRY HAS GIVEN HIM EVERYTHING....HE GIVES BACK NOTHING....NOTHING

Prince Prinze
Prince Prinze

People keep saying is another way but people have did everything speak out nothing happened riot nothing happened a man do not solute the racist national anthem in protest of Injustice now everybody want to put they $0.02 so are you the problem or the solution and she needs to be doing her job she part of the problem

Jack Tilson
Jack Tilson

Everybody is entitled to an opinion. She has hers and I have mine. We both agree that what he is doing is protected by the Constitution, so her additional commentary has no merit.

Stefanie Prejean
Stefanie Prejean

Totally disagree with Ginsburg on this - she needs to review the first amendment.

Eddie Bankston
Eddie Bankston

But disrespecting the president and First Lady is smart and highly respectable...

Rhonda Chambers
Rhonda Chambers

And whoever gave her a position in the highest court were very dumb and disrespectful!

Reggie Miller
Reggie Miller

Complete and utter nonsense, the entire narrative...

Kyle Alexander Summers
Kyle Alexander Summers

Yeah, how dare he protest police brutality. Kneeling is the real issue. I mean, only over a hundred UN nations blasted us for police brutality issues. Im sure it's nothing.

Brenda Iwobi
Brenda Iwobi

I wrote this Justice Ginsburg and told her I did not think so!

Gladys Morgan
Gladys Morgan

I believe in what Colin is doing and I respect him for doing it.

Doug Duncan
Doug Duncan

Sorry. She's just plain wrong on this one.

Terry Case
Terry Case

That is true. It is very disrespectful.

Dan Mason
Dan Mason

How dare Kaepernick exercise the very freedom the rest of the stadium is singing about!

Anthony Beron
Anthony Beron

She is ideologically aligned with Scalia, her "buddy".

Don Fullman
Don Fullman

America, freedom of speech, read that constitution again

Harrold Preston Roberts
Harrold Preston Roberts

I'd like to protest the protesters, protestors. Stop protesting these good and honest protestors and let them protest in peace. I think it very unpatriotic to mitigate another American citizens right to protest. Maybe Donald should build this wall and kick people out who infringe on the rights of Other Americans.

Jim Chapman
Jim Chapman

His protests don't really achieve anything. Even Kaepernick's own mother disowned him. Why doesn't he get a clue?

Jerry Washington
Jerry Washington

With all due respect Justice Ginsburg, the civil rights protests of the past are the reasons why y you're where you are...ask Clarence Thomas!!!

Fundador Deleon
Fundador Deleon

Kneeling is a form of showing submission . SUBMISSION ; - PERSON'S ABILITY TO OBEY - Most times obedience is unconditional and may not require argument. CONCLUSION ; - A servant -master relationship. Are we going back to adopt slavery again.? Because kneeling down is telling the world that you would be OBEY the master . unconditional and without any arguments. Don't kneel down !!! Stand up for something constructive and valuable instead of kneeling down. Masters.? Submission.? What is the point of bringing back kneeling.?

Jack Tilson
Jack Tilson

It is civil disobedience Eddie. Fundador doesn't seem to understand that and is stuck on posture.

Eddie Bankston
Eddie Bankston

Or it can be civil disobedience if done when you're expected to stand in reverence

Fundador Deleon
Fundador Deleon

Kneeling is not civil disobedience -Jack Tilson - kneeling down was and still is a submission. A submission to obey everything. Those who kneel down are not open to disobey but to have a servant- master relation. Kneeling down was the \U0001f451 \U0001f451 \U0001f451 kings and queens favorite thing. Even the devil himself ask Jesus Christ to make an act of kneeling and he would give him kingdoms.

Jerry Washington
Jerry Washington

Plz remember how this country came to be(apologies to the Indians who are still disenfranchised) and understand that the constitution gives him that right to protest.

Brina Doc
Brina Doc

Colin is My Hero\U0001f44d\U0001f3fd\U0001f44d\U0001f3fd\U0001f44d\U0001f3fd

Dan Mason
Dan Mason

Ma'am. Justice, you are dumb, ma'am.

...and he lets it go foul...

Jackie Harris
Jackie Harris

no isn't if you. do your job we would have to sit. justice

Sheria Mathis
Sheria Mathis

You can always tell a person's heart based on what they choose to focus on. Justice Ginsburg could have used her platform to speak out on police brutality. However, she chose to speak out on the very thing she is in office to protect, free speech. She no longer deserves such an honorable position and is clearly the stupid one in this matter!

Terry McMichael
Terry McMichael

I agree with the justice. However she should not make public statements because one day she may have to make a ruling

Sheria Mathis
Sheria Mathis

@Terry I can respect anyone's opinion, but it's what she said. Her choice of words to describe Colin's protest was tasteless! When people marched, folks didn't like that. Now kneeling is a problem. Let me guess we should just accept the ways of injustices and remain silent? Do you have a better solution to the problem since you agree with her?

Willie Martin
Willie Martin

Dude don't be part of the problem be part of the solution. If you walked in someone else shoes your opinion might be different

Drexell Dawson
Drexell Dawson

If this justice was a true and honest one, she respect his freedom of speech and protest..... oh yeah that's right Colin is a person of color and doesn't have that right huh.....

Benjamin Thiel
Benjamin Thiel

She didn't say that Colin needs to be imprisoned, she said that his protest was dumb and it is just as much her Right to say that as it is his Right to take a knee...

Drexell Dawson
Drexell Dawson

Benjamin Thiel like I was saying Colin is right because there's a lot of injustice here in America but when it's injustice somewhere else in the world \U0001f30e America wants to stick its nose it and correct others on their treatment of others..... talking about being a hypocrite.....

Darrell Walker
Darrell Walker

Where are the protests about black on black murder?

Drexell Dawson
Drexell Dawson

Darrell Walker where is the media about white on white murders? O that's right let's continue our dehumanizing the black community. By the way take a look at the statistics and you will see white on white murders are way higher. Propaganda will cloud your judgement.....

Gloria Brooks
Gloria Brooks

At least she lives in a country where she can state her views. Why deprive Colin the same right.