Drew Brees calls out Donald Trump over national anthem protests

The third time is the charm for Drew Brees when it comes to using his platform to create change. 

It took three tries, but Drew Brees seems to finally get it.

Earlier this week, Brees used his platform as an influential white man in a position of power to continue spreading the idea that kneeling during the national anthem was disrespectful to the flag.

Despite the fact that it has been explained over the last four years that kneeling during the anthem was meant to call attention to police brutality and its disproportionate effect on the black community, the peaceful protest was hijacked by the idea that kneeling during the anthem was akin to spitting on the graves of soldiers who died to fighting for American freedom.

Brees’ comments showed that he still didn’t grasp the fact that not all American’s share the freedom that the flag represents, but it appears he now does.

In a lengthy post on Instagram, Brees rounded out his trifecta of statements this week on the Black Lives Matter protests. He admitted that he was wrong to interpret peacefully kneeling during the national anthem to bring attention to police brutality as being about disrespecting the flag.

“Through my ongoing conversations with friends, teammates, and leaders in the black community, I realize this is not an issue about the American flag. It has never been,” Brees wrote.

Not only did Brees share his belated epiphany about the Black Lives Matter movement, but he went so far as to tag Donald Trump, who called Brees out and urged him to pick a side in the debate over kneeling.

Brees picked a side, and it’s not the one Trump is on.

“We can no longer use the flag to turn people away or distract them from the real issues that face our black communities,” Brees said. “We must stop talking about the flag and shift our attention to the real issues of systemic racial injustice, economic oppression, police brutality, and judicial & prison reform.”

This third statement came a day after Brees posted a video apology, which missed the mark in that he apologized for offending anyone with his belief rather than have the epiphany that arrived a day later.

It’s going to be easy to criticize Brees for so quickly having an about-face, especially after he was dragged so hard. But think about how far we’ve come since Colin Kaepernick first took a knee during the national anthem. Back in 2016, and the ensuing years, it was impossible to think it would take three days for Brees to go from regurgitating tired views to being once again told to think about what he was saying to him admitting he was wrong the entire time.

It’s a microcosm of a larger victory that is being had in the name of change right now.

Everyone spoke to Brees about why his comments were so dangerous and hurtful — something that has been happening on the whole for four years — and for the first time in he listened.

A smaller problem in a much larger issue has been solved, and a serious and unexpected stride has been made towards real progress.

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