But – as the NBA and players union discuss how to handle expected anthem demonstrations – Shumpert has changed his tune.
Shumpert on Instagram (hat tip: Joe Vardon of Cleveland.com):
Take a good look at my daughter Iman Tayla Shumpert Jr. The moment she was born was the day I saw the world a lot different. All day I wonder how can I raise her the right way and teach her the right lessons. I can't explain to her what's going on these days between the badge and the people. The badge was made to protect us, not scare us. #stealthefear #steal🔓fear #weprayforpeace For each steal I’m going to donate money and time towards a foundation(s) striding to improve the struggle between the badge and the citizen. I challenge all sponsors and athletes to match these proceeds to contribute to the cause helping families affected by all the killings leaving families and communities traumatized. As big as an awareness Kap has raised by taking a knee and the bravery it took for so many to follow I also understand those that fought for that flag have nothing to do with whats going on in our society today and I no longer believe taking a knee is the answer. This news makes me sick and I am challenging myself to make a difference! #stealthefear #steal🔓fear #weprayforpeace
Kaepernick has repeatedly said his protest is not directed at the military. In fact, he has frequently praised military members for protecting his rights, including free speech.
But the anthem means different things to different people, and if Shumpert wants to stand, good for him. His response to the problems facing this country needn’t match Kaepernick’s.
Donating to causes promoting better relations between the police and the community, something Kaepernick is also doing, is an excellent course.