Football legend Herschel Walker recently defended Drew Brees' right to express his opinion after the New Orleans Saints quarterback was met with swift condemnation for his comments about kneeling during the national anthem.
Brees had said during an interview that he would "never agree with anybody disrespecting the flag of the United States of America." But after swift and harsh backlash from many in the sports world, including some of his own teammates, Brees walked back his comments, saying they "completely missed the mark on the issues we are facing right now as a country."
The speed and severity with which Brees was condemned for his comments were notable and representative of modern day "cancel culture." In essence, Brees, who by all accounts had been very popular around the league, was promptly ostracized simply for sharing an opinion that ran counter to mainstream views.
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But in a radio interview with Glenn Beck on Thursday, Walker shot back at that notion, asking, "Why are people upset that he has an opinion?"
"You know, just because he doesn't believe in what you believe in, why is people upset about that?" Walker said. "That's what is great about America, is we have a right to choose. And if that's the way he feels, it's okay that he feels like that."
The Heisman Trophy winner went on to argue that the reaction to Brees' comment is representative of a broader problem with cancel culture, in general, though he did not use that phrase.
"Why in the world, can people not have an opinion today that they disagree with you? And if you disagree with someone, Glenn, you are going to be called a racist," he said. "If I disagree with someone, I'm going to be called an Uncle Tom."
"And I'm like, jeez. That means I can't think for myself? Can I not think for myself, please? You know, that's the reason, I think, people fought years ago. That's what Martin Luther King marched about," he added.
Listen to more of the interview here:
Heisman winner Herschel Walker is tired of riots & violence: '99.9% of police are good people' youtu.be
Earlier in the week, Walker, who currently serves as co-chair of the President's Council on Sports, Fitness & Nutrition, made headlines for a social media post about the riots erupting in America over George Floyd's death.
In the video post, he slammed politicians who are encouraging the rioters and criticizing the president.