According to Albright College’s statement, Gyree Durante, a college football player has been kicked off the team for kneeling during the national anthem. The college says that he has been kicked off for breaking a teamwide decision and is still considered a valuable member of the college.
Gyree Durante is an Albright College sophomore and a backup quarterback on its football team. Last Saturday, Durante kneeled during the anthem for the second consecutive football game.
This comes following the recent controversies of NFL players deciding to take a knee during the anthem as a way of taking a stance against the institutional racism and social injustices that take place against African Americans.
“I was just taught you fight for what you believe in and you don’t bow to anyone,” Durante said. “I believe heavily in this. So I decided to fight for it.”
An Albright college spokeswoman said that he was removed from the team “for going against a unified decision.” The players had reportedly made a unified decision to stand throughout the anthem, but kneel throughout the coin toss.
“This action, which was supported by the coaching staff, was created as an expression of team unity and out of the mutual respect team members have for one another and the value they place on their differences,” she wrote. “It was established as a way to find common ground in a world with many differing views.”
She said that despite this, Durante remains to be a valued Albright College member.
Comments On the Decision
Several of his teammates commented on Durante’s decision. Josh Powell and Stephen Glynn, both freshmen on the team, said that they understood his decision, but nonetheless felt like he broke his team’s trust.
Durante’s family commented about this on social media, saying that his decision was about something bigger than just college football. They also said that they supported his decision and hope it keeps him motivated to stay in the fight against social injustice.
Some have argued that the view that a team decision is more important than supporting a team member’s feelings about a systemic injustice against African Americans is a sign that there really is an awareness problem when it comes to African American rights.
After being kicked off, Durante said that he is considering the option of transferring colleges and will still continue to stand up for his beliefs.