Evans issues an apology to the U.S. military.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans has reversed his stance on protesting the National Anthem, just days after he said he'd be sitting it out in protest of President-elect Donald Trump until "Ashton Kutcher comes out and says we’ve been punked."
Evans didn't stand for the Anthem this past Sunday during the NFL's "Salute To Service" weekend in which they honored the troops who have and are currently serving our country. Naturally, he received plenty of backlash from Bucs fans as well as fans around the league.
Here's what he told reporters after the game regarding his decision not to stand:
"I don’t want to, you know, disrespect the veterans or anything. The men and women who serve this country, I’m forever indebted to them. But the things that’s been going on in America lately, I’m not going to stand for that. When Ashton Kutcher comes out and says we’ve been punked, then I’ll stand again. But I won’t stand anymore.”
“If this happens, then America’s not right right now. I said this a long time ago. When [Donald Trump] ran, I thought it was a joke, and the joke continues.
“I’m not a political person that much, but I got common sense. And I know when something’s not right."
And now today Evans has flip flopped, saying he'll be standing for the Anthem from here on out. He issued an apology to all of the U.S. military members, their families, and the fans who were offended by his actions on Sunday.
He concluded his statement by saying, "This Sunday, I will be back to standing with my teammates."
"I want to start by apologizing to all the U.S. military members, their families, and the fans who I offended by my actions on Sunday. It was never my intention as I have tremendous respect for the men and women who serve our country.
I have very strong emotions regarding some of the many issues that exist in our society today. I chose to sit as an expression of my frustration towards this year’s election. It was very personal for me, as it was for so many Americans.
With that being said, I will not sit again during the National Anthem because I want to focus my efforts on finding more effective ways to communicate my message and bring about change by supporting organizations and movements that fight for equal rights for minorities.
This Sunday, I will be back to standing with my teammates."