September 24, 2017


A's Bruce Maxwell first MLB player to kneel for anthem (Susan SlusserSeptember 23, 2017, SF Chronicle)

The product of a U.S. military family, Maxwell placed his hand on his heart and faced the flag during the anthem while taking a knee before the game against Texas.

"The point of my kneeling was not to disrespect our military or our constitution or our country," Maxwell said. "My hand was over my heart because I love this country and I have family members, including my father, who bled for this country, and who continue to serve. At the end of the day, this is the best country on the planet. I am and forever will be an American citizen and grateful to be here, but my kneeling is what's getting the attention, and I'm kneeling for the people who don't have a voice.

"This goes beyond the black and Hispanic communities because right now we have a racial divide that's being practiced from the highest power we have in this country saying it's basically OK to treat people differently. I'm kneeling for a cause but I'm in no way disrespecting my country or my flag."

Mark Canha, who is from San Jose and went to Cal, placed his hand on Maxwell's shoulder. After the anthem, the teammates hugged.

"Every fiber in my being was telling me he needed a brother today," Canha said. "I thought about kneeling myself when (Colin) Kaepernick was doing it but decided not to, but when Bruce said he was going to do it, I thought, 'Someone has to be out there, and I have to be one of those people.'"

Maxwell held a meeting before the game to let his teammates know about his decision, along with manager Bob Melvin and general manager David Forst.

"He was as articulate as I've seen him," Melvin said. "This wasn't an emotional thing just today for him. Something had been leading up to it and he felt today would be the right platform to do it."

The A's issued a statement on Twitter that read: "The Oakland A's pride ourselves on being inclusive. We respect and support all our players' constitutional rights and freedom of expression."

Because of the various ways it can be perceived, every NFL player today need not kneel, but they should make a uniform gesture of solidarity with their teammates who Donald is attacking.
Posted by at September 24, 2017 8:00 AM