To Top

Ruth Bader Ginsburg apologizes for Colin Kaepernick criticism

Supreme court justice who called NFL players anthem protest dumb and disrespectful says: My comments were inappropriately dismissive and harsh

Supreme court justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg apologized on Friday for her remarks about NFL star Colin Kaepernicks ongoing protest against the national anthem.

In a statement released by the supreme courts press office, Ginsburg walked back statements she made during an interview with Yahoo News in which she called the protest dumb and disrespectful.

Some of you have inquired about a book interview in which I was asked how I felt about Colin Kaepernick and other NFL players who refused to stand for the national anthem, Ginsburg said. Barely aware of the incident or its purpose, my comments were inappropriately dismissive and harsh. I should have declined to respond.

Ginsburgs original comments came during an interview about her new book on Monday. She said that, while the protest was legal, she thought it was a terrible thing to do.

Would I arrest them for doing it? No. I think its dumb and disrespectful. I would have the same answer if you asked me about flag burning. I think its a terrible thing to do, but I wouldnt lock a person up for doing it. I would point out how ridiculous it seems to me to do such an act.

Kaepernick stopped standing for the national anthem in August, in protest against racial injustice in America, especially police brutality. The protest captured national attention and he has since been joined by other NFL players and sports stars.

Many have also taken offense at the San Francisco 49ers quarterbacks protest, with some saying it is disrespectful to military servicemen and women. Kaepernick has reiterated that it is not targeted at members of the military.

In an interview with the San Jose Mercury News, Kaepernick hit back at Ginsburg.

It is disappointing to hear a supreme court justice call a protest against injustices and oppression stupid, dumb in reference to players doing that, Kaepernick said.

I was reading an article and it refers to white critique of black protests and how they try to delegitimize it by calling it idiotic, dumb, stupid, things of that nature, so they can sidestep the real issue. As I was reading that I saw more and more truth how this has been approached by people in power and white people in power in particular.

Ginsburg issued an apology earlier this year for saying she could not imagine what the country would be with Donald Trump as president in a series of unusually candid political comments for a supreme court justice. Days after the remarks were published, in another statement issued by the court, Ginsburg said those comments were ill advised.

Read more: