GREENBURGH, N.Y. — Carmelo Anthony has exchanged e-mails with Colin Kaepernick and said he supports the San Francisco 49ers quarterback for taking a stand by kneeling during the national anthem.
“I don’t even know if people understood what was behind it,” Anthony said Tuesday. “So a lot of people turned their back on him, was calling him all types of names, that he’s stupid for doing what he was doing. But it’s not until you really get to the nitty-gritty of what he’s trying to say and what his message is . . . I support him, to be honest with you. I support the courage that he had to take that stance on the level that he’s taking it.
“As far as everybody else, I don’t know if kind of the masses thought the following would be as crazy as it is and everybody would follow suit with him. I thought people thought that everybody was going to turn their back on him. I think it actually brought people closer to him and his message and his cause. Everybody does it in their own way.
“He wanted to kneel on the national anthem. His argument was not with the actual flag, it’s everything else that comes along with it. My thing was police brutality. Somebody else’s thing might be education. So I think we all have to just figure out what’s our task we want to tackle and go forward with that.”
Anthony has been very outspoken about some of the social issues and violent acts throughout the country that have resulted in protests in other professional leagues. He posted his feelings on Instagram, opened the ESPYs with fellow stars LeBron James, Chris Paul and Dwyane Wade demanding change, and held a town hall in Los Angeles during the summer before playing in the Rio Olympics.
Anthony said he still doesn’t know what he will do, but it doesn’t sound as if he will kneel during the anthem. Anthony said the Knicks will act together in what they do.
“I haven’t even thought that far as far as what I’m going to do with the national anthem,” Anthony said. “Whatever I’m going to do I think we’re all going to do it as a unit, as a team. We’re all going to be on the same page when we do that.
“As far as kneeling, standing, I had an opportunity to do that in the Olympics. I stood strong and put my hand over my chest and represented my country the way I had to. I don’t really know as far as what’s going to happen or not. I do know that something will be done. We will continue to try to get back into the community as a team, as players, and keep this conversation going.”