Athletes Who Protested The National Anthem

Then, in the 1972 Summer Olympics, Vince Matthews and Wayne Collett won the gold and silver medals in the 400m race event respectively. During the national anthem, the two displayed the most casual protest of all-time. Both had their jackets unzipped and both turned their back to the flag, with their hands on their hips while chatting with one another.

When the anthem finished playing, Collett raised his fist in the air. When asked about it later, he stated that he couldn’t honor the anthem because he didn’t believe the words were true. He also spoke about the struggles of African Americans at that time.

Both Matthews and Collett were banned from any future Olympic competition.

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