WNBA star Brittney Griner, who notoriously attempted to jump in on the Black Lives Matter bandwagon of 2020 by boycotting the national anthem at WNBA games, is now singing a different tune after returning from from a Russian prison colony.
On Friday, Griner stood proudly during the playing of the anthem ahead of the match between the Phoenix Mercury and the Los Angeles Sparks. According to a report from Fox News, Griner attempted to explain her about-face during the post-game press conference.
“You have the right to protest, the right to [be] able to speak out, question, challenge and do all these things,” said Griner. “What I went through and everything, it just means a little bit more to me now. So I want to be able to stand. I was literally in a cage [in Russia] and could not stand the way I wanted to.”
— Outside the Lines (@OTLonESPN) May 16, 2023
“Just being able to hear my national anthem, see my flag, I definitely want to stand. Now everybody that will not stand or not come out, I totally support them one-hundred percent. That’s our right, as an American in this great country.
“I appreciate everything a little bit more, all of the small moments, like, ‘Oh, I’m so tired I don’t want to go to practice today,’ that has changed, honestly,” she added. “Tomorrow is not guaranteed, you don’t know what it’s going to be like. I feel a lot older somehow, too.”
Griner’s agent published an op-ed shortly afterwards with Time magazine attempting to smooth over whatever left-wing, social justice backlash may occur, especially since Griner made such a big deal about boycotting the anthem just a few years ago.
In 2020, when Black Lives Matter and Antifa were causing over a billion dollars of damage across America’s cities while non-protestors and rioters were told to stay locked in their homes and quarantine because of the Chinese-originated COVID-19 pandemic, Griner used her fame to help lead the anti-anthem movement with other athletes. She event went as far as to say the league should drop it from games all together.
“I honestly feel we should not play the national anthem during our season,” Griner said at the time. “I think we should take that much of a stand.”
“I’m going to protest regardless,” she continued. “I’m not going to be out there for the national anthem. If the league continues to want to play it, that’s fine. It will be all season long, I’ll not be out there. I feel more are going to probably do the same thing. I can only speak for myself.”
Talk about a drastic turn of a stance, but that’s what’ll happen when you get arrested in a foreign country that doesn’t care about your stance on social justice issues. Griner should be glad that this country she disrespected so much traded a literal international weapons dealer in exchange for her, a WNBA player who committed a crime in a foreign country and should have faced some degree of punishment.
While some will say her original 9-year sentence for an illegal substances possession was retaliation for the U.S. involvement against Russian in Ukraine, and others may point out the Biden White House got involved solely as a PR campaign, obviously Griner is thankful she was born an American.
What are your thoughts? Is her newfound love of the anthem genuine? Let us know in the comments below.