When major sports return to the US, there will no doubt be a greater number of players kneeling during the national anthem in response to the Black Lives Matter movement.
The issue has already popped up in pro softball, with Olympian Cat Osterman writing on Twitter on Monday that she “will not represent” the team she signed with because of their activity on social media on the subject.
A tweet on Monday by the ScrapYard Dawgs featured a picture of Osterman and her teammates standing during the anthem with a caption that read, “Hey @realDonaldTrump Pro Fastpitch being played live @usssaspacecoast @USSSAPride Everyone respecting the FLAG!”
The team’s tweet has since been deleted, but not before it drew criticism from Osterman and her teammates, who also threatened to leave the team.
Another fellow Olympian, Natasha Watley, tweeted: “Seriously fuming right now… @ScrapYardFP you are better than this! Haven’t we been going over this for the last 3 weeks? This is not funny at ALL! Has nothing to do with respecting the flag and ALL to do with respecting ALL Americans in this country regardless of color of skin.”
The issue has resurfaced more fervently in recent weeks following the killing of George Floyd by a police officer in Minneapolis, but has simmered since former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick began to kneel during the anthems before NFL games to protest police brutality.
President Trump has criticized Kaepernick and others for not standing during the anthem.
The 37-year-old Osterman, who came out of retirement last year, also tweeted: “I DO NOT support the comments made during our game by @scrapyardfp & I will not represent them. We as a people are working towards change, and THIS IS NOT IT.”
The team’s next game is scheduled for Wednesday.