Several of Gabe Kapler’s fellow principals lend their support to his decision to avoid the field during the national anthem in protest of the recent Texas school shootings.
Kapler, the San Francisco Giants manager, said Friday that he has no plans to be on the field for the national anthem “until I feel better about the direction of our country. I don’t expect the needle to necessarily move. It’s just something I feel strong enough to take that step of.” for him.”
A day after Kapler’s comments, there were no uniformed giants on the field for the national anthem ahead of the team’s 3-2 loss to the Reds.
19 children and two teachers were killed Tuesday at an elementary school in Ovaldi, Texas. The attack came just 10 days after a racially-hate gunman killed 10 black people at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York.
Texas Rangers manager Chris Woodward said Kapler’s action was “courageous”.
“I think we’re all disappointed, especially in this country,” Woodward said. “No one is happy. It’s not about which side you are. All we need is for us to evolve as a society. I won’t really comment on whether or not I’m going to do what he did.”
Kapler, a former teammate during their playing days, was outspoken on many issues, said Boston Red Sox manager Alex Cora “and I’m proud of him for that. He’s a good friend of mine and he’s the type to respect him remotely for what he does and when he does, he’s That’s good for him. I understand his reasons. He has been very open and I know there are a lot of people who will support him.”
Buck Showalter, a veteran manager of the New York Mets, said he respects “how Gabe feels and how he acts about it.” When asked about Kapler, Philadelphia coach Joe Girardi replied, “That’s Gabi’s decision. That’s it, I’ll leave it at that.”
Tony La Russa, director of the Chicago White Sox, said he agreed with Kapler that something had to be done, but he didn’t think the anthem was the time to protest.
“I personally respect him a lot,” La Rossa said. “I love him. And I think he’s right. But it’s not the flag. And it’s not the national anthem.”
La Rosa added that he felt it was disrespectful to the military not to stand when the national anthem was played.
“You have to understand what the warriors think when they hear the anthem or see the flag,” he said. And the expenses they paid and their families. And if I really understand it, I think it is impossible not to salute the flag and not hear the national anthem.”
Dave Roberts, the manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers, said Kapler is “very passionate about the things he believes in and that’s his way of protesting… I don’t think any of us are happy with what’s happening in our country. I respect the people who are using all platforms to bring this up.”
Kapler protested while the anthem was played in the past. In July 2020, before the start of the 60-game season, in which the virus was cut short, Kapler knelt alongside defensive back Jaylene Davis before an exhibition game against the Oakland Athletics. Davis made a statement about the racial and social issues facing the country.