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White House Defends Olympians Turning Their Backs During the National Anthem

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

The White House is defending Olympians who turn their backs during the National Anthem and to the U.S. flag during qualification trials and official games, which will be held in Tokyo later this year. 


Under questioning from Fox News' Peter Doocy Monday, Press Secretary Jen Psaki was asked about athlete Gwen Berry turning her back to the U.S. flag and anthem over the weekend after coming in third at trials. 

"Does President Biden think that is appropriate behavior for someone who hopes to represent Team USA?" Doocy asked.

"I haven't spoken to the President specifically about this but I know he's incredibly proud to be an American and has great respect for the anthem and all it represents, especially for our men and women serving in uniform all around the world," Psaki said. "He would also say of course that part of that pride in our country means recognizing there are moments where we as a country haven't lived up to our highest ideals and it means respecting the right of people, granted to them in the constitutional, to peaceably protest."  

Others argue if Olympians want to represent the United States, especially internationally, they should respect the flag and anthem. Republican Congressman Dan Crenshaw is calling for Berry to be removed from the team


Also, the statement today is a familiar one.

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