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Rapinoe, one of the most famous soccer players in the world, responded to an emotional statement tweeted by Crimson Tide player Taylor Morgan.
“We are with you (Taylor Morgan) keep walking in that strength, and doing the right thing. #BlackLivesMatter,” Rapinoe tweeted.
Morgan was seen kneeling Saturday during the anthem alongside other teammates. After the game, she responded to what she called “the hateful fans comments” in a lengthy statement.
“My choice to kneel before today’s game was one of the easiest decisions that I’ve ever had to make. By kneeling, it was in no way meant as a disrespect to the flag nor the military; which both my father and brother are a part of. In fact, I did this for them. I did this for the millions of African Americans like them that are being oppressed,” she wrote.
“By taking a knee alongside the number of athletes that have done this across the country, I am committing to help with us being the change for the future generations of this team, this athletic program and this country. I will use my platform that I’ve worked hard to earn in a way that will be seen and heard.
“I am black, but I am mixed. I recognize my privilege and will use it to support to those who lack it. In the end, my actions are not meant to disrespect the flag, but instead are actions that are fighting for what is right, and that is and always will be that black lives do matter. This fight against systemic racism is far from over, but I can assure you that change is coming, and I will be a part of making sure it does.”
Crimson Tide coach Wes Hart said after the match that he supports his players, according to the Tuscaloosa News.
“Our message to the team was, ‘You are adults, and if you have a personal opinion, we support your right to express it,” Hart said. “I didn’t try to make too much out of it, and my approach will be to continue to go forward with mutual respect and love for each other.”