Australia’s National Rugby Team Refuses to Kneel for Black Lives Matter
Team not interested in making political statements.
Australia’s national rugby team decided, after a unanimous vote by the players, it would not take a knee in support of the Black Lives Matter, insisting they were not interested in making political statements.
Coach Dave Rennie said they had discussed the idea of kneeling during the national anthem before voting against it.
The move makes them the first Australian national sporting team to do so.
But Australia will wear a new “First Nation” jersey for the contest, Sky Sports reported.
“The key thing is that this is about honoring our Indigenous people, and we want the focus to be on that,” Rennie explained.
“Everyone has got their own opinions around the other situation, but we want the focus to be around reflecting on our history and our past."
"Our focus is around the First Nations people and the Indigenous jersey; we’re not looking to make a political statement.”
He said they came to a “unanimous decision" after the group talked with the team leaders.
Nick Farr-Jones, the former Wallaby captain, supported the move:
“To take the risk of basically splitting the support the Wallabies are starting to earn through their gutsy performances in Wellington and Auckland – just don’t do it guys, it’s too risky,” Farr-Jones said on radio 2GB.
“You run the risk that a few (viewers) would just turn off. They don’t want to see politics in national sport."
"That’s a real risk. I think it could be divisive.”
The issue of refusing to bow to BLM is not new to sports.
Earlier this year, an NFL star took a stand against mounting pressure from the radical-left to submit to Black Lives Matter, asserting that he will not kneel for the national anthem.
Pittsburgh Steelers defensive end Stephon Tuitt has vowed that he won't be joining his colleagues, however.
In a tweet, Tuitt forthrightly explained his position regarding protesting against the country he loves.
"Also, I’m not kneeling for the flag and screw anybody who have a problem with that," he said on Twitter.
"My grandmother was a immigrant from the Caribbean, and age worked her ass off to bring 20 people over the right way."