Seahawks’ Bennett on Sitting During Anthem: ‘I Love Hot Dogs Like Any Other American,' But...

By Theresa Smith | August 14, 2017 | 6:45pm EDT
Seattle Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett. (Screengrab: ESPN)

( – One day after Oakland Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch opted not to stand during the national anthem, his former teammate Michael Bennett also remained in the bleachers for the national anthem before a Seahawks-Chargers game.

Bennett told ESPN after the game that he “love[s] hotdogs, just like any other American,” but that he does not “love segregation” or oppression.

Bennett, a defensive end for the Seattle Seahawks, said to ESPN, “Last week, I just – with everything that has been going on in the last couple of months, especially after the last couple of days, seeing everything in Virginia, seeing what’s going on out there earlier today in Seattle, just wanted to be able to use my platform to be able to continue to speak on injustice.”

“First of all, I want to make sure people understand, I love the military. I love – my father was in the military,” he continued. “I love hotdogs like any other American. I love football like any other American.”

“But, I don’t love segregation. I don’t love riots. I don’t love oppression. I don’t love gender slander,” said Bennett. “And I just want to see people have the equality that they deserve. And I want to be able to use this platform to continuously push the message of that, you know. And keep journeying out. Keep finding out how unselfish can we be as a society?”


“How can we continuously love one another and understand that people are different?” he asked. “And just because they’re different doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t like them. Just because they don’t smell the way you smell. Just because they don’t eat what you eat. Just because they don’t pray to the same god you pray to doesn’t mean you should hate them.”

According to ESPN, Bennett is a supporter of Colin Kaepernick’s “Know Your Rights” campaign.  The campaign tweeted on Sunday in support of Bennett.

As previously reported, players protesting the national anthem are the number one reason sports fans watched fewer National Football League (NFL) games last football season.

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