San Francisco 49ers star Eric Reid is accusing Vice President Mike Pence of contributing to “systemic oppression” after he walked out of an Indianapolis Colts game on Sunday over members of the 49ers kneeling for the national anthem.
“Until somebody tells me that he goes to NFL games on a regular basis, I think this is a PR stunt because he knows our team has had the most players protest,” Reid said. “For me, that's case in point for systemic oppression.”
Reid claimed Pence is a “powerful man” with a “huge following” and that he's using his platform to “confuse the message that we've been working so hard to control the narrative on”:
Eric Reid on Pence — [him leaving the Colts-49ers game was] a PR stunt… case in point for systematic oppression: pic.twitter.com/Sykl288zwV
— Dieter Kurtenbach (@dkurtenbach) October 8, 2017
President Donald Trump said he personally asked Pence to leave the stadium if any players kneeled during the national anthem. He said he was “proud” of the vice president for doing so:
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 8, 2017
Reid isn't the only one to criticize Pence for his NFL walkout. Critics accused the vice president of planning the demonstration in advance:
Mike Pence went to the game to leave. I thought they only do that for Knicks games.
— Nathaniel Meyersohn (@nmeyersohn) October 8, 2017
Vice President Mike Pence attends football game so he can leave after players kneel during anthem. Fixed it for you. https://t.co/pIFzM9w2MB
— Hend Amry (@LibyaLiberty) October 8, 2017
How many tax dollars went to security at the Colts game today so Mike Pence could walk out when players did what he knew they'd do?
— Michael David Smith (@MichaelDavSmith) October 8, 2017
But when it comes to the NFL's national anthem controversy, the majority of Americans have made it clear that they disapprove of using the anthem as a platform to protest.