Kate Upton has weighed in on the national anthem controversy.
The model and actress, best known for her appearances on the covers of several Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issues, scolded NFL players for protesting during “The Star-Spangled Banner” on Sept. 11, reports Entertainment Weekly.
Her message appeared on Instagram:
Sitting or kneeling down during the national anthem is a disgrace to those people who have served and currently serve our country. Sitting down during the national anthem on September 11th is even more horrific. Protest all you want and use social media all you want. However, during the nearly two minutes when that song is playing, I believe everyone should put their hands on their heart and be proud of our country for we are all truly blessed.
Players for the Miami Dolphins, New England Patriots, Kansas City Chiefs, and Seattle Seahawks all protested in various ways when the national anthem was played before their games on Sep. 11, expressing their solidarity with San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick.
Kaepernick initiated the protest when he sat on the bench during the national anthem prior to the Aug. 26 game with the Green Bay Packers.
Then, prior to the Sept. 1 game against the San Diego Chargers, he kneeled on the sideline during the anthem, along with fellow teammate Eric Reid. The same day, Jeremy Lane of the Seattle Seahawks protested by sitting while the anthem played.
Megan Rapinoe, a star player for the Seattle Reign franchise of the National Women’s Soccer League, joined the protest movement by kneeling during the national anthem prior to her team’s Sept. 4 game against Chicago.
Upton’s post was criticized by journalist Soledad O’Brien, who tweeted, “Maybe you can be proud to be an American and also protest those things that you think aren’t so great about America.”
To which Upton replied: “They have every right and SHOULD protest just not during those two minutes on 9/11.”