Jaguars President Apologizes to Veterans for Players' National Anthem Protest

Jaguars President apologizes following national anthem demonstration in London

Jaguars President apologizes following national anthem demonstration in London

The Jacksonville Jaguars have sent a letter to Bill Spann, director of Jacksonville's military affairs and veterans department, apologizing for the team's demonstration.

In an October 6 letter, team President Mark Lamping told Bill Spann, director of Jacksonville's military affairs and veterans department, he appreciated Spann's willingness to "candidly" share his thoughts, helping the team understand how its actions were received by former and current members of the USA armed forces, as WJXT reported.

The Jaguars' protest drew criticism from Jacksonville mayor Lenny Curry, who nonetheless understood the protesters' right to speak up.

The meeting came more than a week after the Jaguars' Sept. 24 game at Wembley Stadium in London, where about a dozen players took a knee on the sideline during the national anthem.

In a letter dated October 6 and sent to Bill Spann, the city's director of military affairs and veterans department, Lamping said the organization did not fully consider the furor that would result from those actions, especially after the entire team stood for "God Save the Queen".

Lamping admitted the team was "remiss in not fully comprehending" how participating in the demonstration, which occurred in varying forms before games across the country that day, would appear, considering the Jaguars were on foreign soil and stood for the foreign anthem. "We owe you an apology and hope you will accept it". "I stand and cover my heart for the pledge and the anthem", Curry said in a statement immediately after the protests. The U.S. Constitution protects the right for a lot of people to do a lot of stupid things.

The Jaguars' actions in London were in response to President Donald Trump's comments during a political rally in Huntsville, Alabama, on September 22.

Jaguars players linked arms for the playing of the national anthem and Jalen Ramsey, A.J. Bouye, Calais Campbell, Malik Jackson, Tashaun Gipson, Yannick Ngakoue and Dante Fowler were among those that took a knee.

The kneeling players then stood during the singing of God Save the Queen. "I think what we're seeing is the great divider overcoming the great uniter".

In his letter, Lamping thanked Spann, who served in the U.S. Navy, for "candidly sharing" his thoughts and helping the team's leaders understand how the players' actions were perceived by current and former members of the military.

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