WILDER, Ky. — A Northern Kentucky sports bar held a counter protest in response to NFL players kneeling during the national anthem.
Top Ten Sports Bar held a “Patriotism Day” celebration Sunday during game time, noon to 4 p.m.. Patrons gathered to burn and shred NFL jerseys at the bar.
Last Sunday, more than 100 NFL players sat, took a knee or raised their fists during the National Anthem.
The movement was started last year by former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who kneeled during the anthem to protest racial inequality — specifically police brutality and a lack of prosecution and conviction of officers who shoot and kill unarmed black men.
The Bengals locked arms for the first time last Sunday during the anthem. Coach Marvin Lewis called it a display of support for the community and one another.
Radio personality and local attorney Eric Deters, cousin of Prosecutor Joe Deters, hosted the event.
“My belief personally is that during our national anthem, it’s not a time to grandstand for politics,” Deters said. “The time to do that is on your own.”
Not all Bengals fans are on board with bashing the NFL.
Eric Slee said the response has been embarrassing.
“I think a lot of Bengals fans tend to bandwagon pretty quick, on and off,” Slee said.
Billy Watson, co-owner of Kitty’s Sports Bar in Cincinnati, said he thinks kneeling during the national anthem is “a little bit over the top.”
“The veterans that made this country great, if it weren’t for them we wouldn’t be playing football on Sunday,” Watson said. “So, if you have a forum or something you stand for, don’t do it on the NFL time, do it on your own time.”