The playing of the national anthem at sporting events has become a hot-button political issue, particularly in the NFL, as fans and media either applaud or attack players and coaches based on whether or not they elect to stand, link arms, kneel or show up at all while the anthem is playing.
The national anthem will be played prior to the start of this week’s Presidents Cup at Liberty National in Jersey City, N.J., in what will be a particularly poignant setting, with the Statue of Liberty and the refurbished skyline of lower Manhattan in the background, where the Freedom Tower shines brightly in the place where the Twin Towers once stood.
But can we expect anyone on Steve Stricker’s U.S. team to stage any sort of silent protest during the anthem’s playing?
According to Stricker’s comments in his press conference on Tuesday morning, the answer is no.
“We’ve had a discussion already,” Stricker said, “and none of my players want to do that.”
When Stricker was asked to elaborate on the discussion he had with his team, he responded, “I just wanted to know what they wanted to do and how we wanted to proceed as a team. So we were going to do what we always do and that’s take off our hat and put our hands across our chest and over our heart and respect the flag. So that’s what we’re planning on doing.”
Whether or not there will be signs of protest from any members of the International team remains to be seen.