Does Brandon Roy Hate America?

by Marcel Mutoni / @marcel_mutoni

That, more or less, is the question being asked by one columnist in Portland. You see, for whatever reason, Roy doesn’t stand with the rest of the team during “The Star-Spangled Banner” prior to every game, and this clearly means he’s a communist!

Well, that or he’s a selfish person. Either way, he’s a bad guy.

The floor is yours, John Canzano:

It is not a political statement. It is not a protest. He said it is not intended as a slap on patriotism, or the ongoing war but Trail Blazers guard Brandon Roy has long been absent from the Rose Garden Arena floor during the national anthem. For two seasons now, Roy leaves the court before “The Star Spangled Banner” is performed. He waits out of sight, in the arena tunnel, and has a quiet moment of prayer while his teammates stand and honor America together.

Something about that feels troubling. Roy is the Blazers captain, and leader, and two-time All Star. And while I understand his desire to have a personal moment to gather his thoughts, I think there is ample time for a meditative moment in the hours leading to the game and I worry that the statement he’s making is one of individualism.

Brandon Roy’s political or religious leanings are unknown; he says that he uses this time as an opportunity to pray and gather his thoughts. Something one would think he’s totally entitled to.

Roy says that if this rubs enough people the wrong way, he’ll stop doing it. It’s a shame that this type of thing is even up for discussion.

Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf must be rolling over in his grave.