MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross is clearing up comments that he made during an event in New York Monday night.
According to the New York Daily News, Ross said this season “all of our players will be standing” during the National Anthem.
Julius Thomas, Michael Thomas, and Kenny Stills were the Dolphins players that participated in the kneeling protests last season. Last season, Ross said supported the players right to protest if they chose to do so.
The Daily News story reported that Ross said he changed his mind because he felt that the message being sent by taking a knee could be interpreted as a protest against “support of our country and the military.”
Tuesday morning, Ross clarified his comments in a statement.
“I have no intention of forcing our players to stand during the anthem and I regret that my comments have been misconstrued. I’ve shared my opinion with all our players: I’m passionate about the cause of social justice and I feel that kneeling is an ineffective tactic that alienates more people than it enlists. I know our players care about the military and law enforcement too because I’ve seen the same players who are fighting for social justice engaging positively with law enforcement and the military. I care passionately that the message of social justice resonates far and wide and I will continue to support and fund efforts for those who fight for equality for all.”
– Stephen Ross