Republican senators to Tennessee’s public colleges: Stop athletes from kneeling during national anthem – By Natalie Allison (Nashville Tennessean) / Feb 23 2021
Tennessee Republicans are up in arms over a state college basketball team’s decision to kneel last week during the playing of “The Star-Spangled Banner,” prompting legislators to warn the public university system not to allow student athletes to do so again.
A firestorm of controversy has surrounded the action by players on the men’s East Tennessee State University basketball team, who during a Feb. 16 game at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga dropped to one knee on the court as the national anthem played.
Coach Jason Shay and ETSU president Brian Noland have said the team did not intend to disrespect that nation’s flag or military, but are seeking to prompt discussions about racial inequality.
After voicing their outrage in legislative meetings, local television news segments and social media posts over the players’ act of peaceful protest, Senate Republicans on Monday sent a letter to all presidents and chancellors of public Tennessee colleges and universities.