Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg had some strong words for San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick and the football players who are protesting the national anthem.
Mr. Kaepernick has become the figurehead for a growing movement of sports players taking a knee or raising a fist during “The Star-Spangled Banner” to protest racial and social injustices in America.
Justice Ginsburg she finds the players’ form of protest “dumb and disrespectful.”
“I think it’s really dumb of them,” the 83-year-old told Yahoo Global News Anchor Katie Couric in an interview published Monday.
“Would I arrest them for doing it? No,” Justice Ginsburg said. “I think it’s dumb and disrespectful. I would have the same answer if you asked me about flag burning. I think it’s a terrible thing to do, but I wouldn’t lock a person up for doing it. I would point out how ridiculous it seems to me to do such an act.
“If they want to be stupid, there’s no law that should be preventive,” she continued. “If they want to be arrogant, there’s no law that prevents them from that. What I would do is strongly take issue with the point of view that they are expressing when they do that.”
Justice Ginsburg, who was nominated to the Supreme Court in 1993 by President Bill Clinton, said she was troubled, but optimistic, about the rhetoric being used this election season.
“It’s distressing, but I am also hopeful that it will go away,” she told Ms. Couric, praising Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. “For me, it’s very refreshing to see a woman with the knowledge that she has, with the poise and the — command of language.”