White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki responded in a quite defensive way to a question regarding an American Olympic athlete turning her back on the national anthem on the podium while receiving a medal.
Fox News' White House correspondent, Peter Doocy, asked Psaki:
"This weekend, Gwen Berry, who hopes to represent the US as an Olympian on the hammer-throwing events won a bronze medal at the trials, and then she turned her back on the flag while the anthem played."
"Does President Biden think that is appropriate behavior for someone who hopes to represent Team USA?"
Psaki replied to the question saying:
"I haven't spoken to the President specifically about this, but I know he's incredibly proud to be an American and has great respect for the anthem and all that it represents, especially for our men and women serving in uniform all around the world."
"He would also say, of course, that part of that pride in our country means recognizing there are moment where we as a country haven't lived up to our highest ideals."
"And, it means respecting the right of people granted to them in the Constitution to peacefully protest."
Berry herself previously was quoted as saying:
"They said they were going to play it before we walked out, then they played it when we were out there. But I don't really want to talk about the anthem because that's not important."
"The anthem doesn't speak for me. It never has.''
Berry, a self-described "activist athlete", was also at the Pan-Am games a little less than two years ago where she raised her fist in defiance while standing at the podium.
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