In today’s hypocrisy news, Democratic Senator Chris Murphy (CT) just called out Vice President Mike Pence for refusing to stand for the joint Korean teams as they marched out together in the Winter Olympics opening ceremony.
It reminded him of another high profile instance of “using sports for politics,” so he laid out the argument on Twitter.
Why does Pence hate the opening ceremonies? Oh wait…he's a using ceremony at a sporting event to protest something else. Where have I seen that before? https://t.co/B9sTboKVa9
— Chris Murphy (@ChrisMurphyCT) February 10, 2018
Murphy was comparing Pence’s very public protest of North Korea at the opening ceremony to his vocal criticism of NFL players kneeling during the national anthem at football games.
Pence famously walked out of an Indianapolis Colts game last year when players on the San Francisco 49ers took a knee during the National Anthem in an acknowledgement of violence perpetrated against African Americans, often at the hands of law enforcement officers.
What many saw as a publicity stunt cost millions in taxpayer dollars to pull off.
Back then, here’s what Pence said about the whole thing.
“I left today’s Colts game because President Trump and I will not dignify any event that disrespects our soldiers, our Flag, or our National Anthem. At a time when so many Americans are inspiring our nation with their courage, resolve, and resilience, now, more than ever, we should rally around our Flag and everything that unites us.”
Basically, he was drawing a line in the sand, and saying that sporting events are no place for protest.
Go ahead and eat your words, then Pence because it looks like you just broke your own rule. And for hardly as worthy a cause. It was an historic moment when the North and South Korean Olympic athletes marched together, showing the world a rare sign of unity and potentially signaling hope for a warming of relations between the two at a time when tensions are high.
Many are saying this gesture could open up the possibility for the first diplomatic talks between the two nations in over 10 years. The least the vice president could do is stand and acknowledge how big a deal this is.