Editor's note: There is no audio in the above video clip
Before tipoff of the opening preseason game Monday night at the Kings' new arena, the Golden 1 Center, Bay Area native Leah Tysse took the mic to sing the national anthem. Near the end of her performance, Tysse took a stance as she lowered to the ground.
With Kings cheerleaders holding onto the American flag behind her, Tysee lowered her head and went to a knee to finish her performace. The act stems from 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick protesting the national anthem for social and racial injustice in America.
In a statement on her Facebook page, Tysse called her act of taking a knee, "The most patriotic thing I could do." Her full statement can be seen below:
Why I took a knee while singing the Anthem at a Sacramento Kings NBA game: This act embodies the conflict many of us feel. I love and honor my country as deeply as anyone yet it is my responsibility as an American to speak up against injustice as it affects my fellow Americans. I have sung the anthem before but this time taking a knee felt like the most patriotic thing I could do. I cannot idly stand by as black people are unlawfully profiled, harassed and killed by our law enforcement over and over and without a drop of accountability. I believe that the majority of police are good and are against this too and as a nation we all need to speak up. We should all be outraged and demand justice and an end to the brutality. Let’s look around our communities for those facilitating healthy interactions between law enforcement and communities of color and support. The sad reality is, as a white American I am bestowed a certain privilege in this nation that is not enjoyed by all people. Black families are having much different conversations with their children about how to interact with the police than white families. Let's be honest. Until we can recognize that white privilege exists we cannot have a dialogue about race. Whether or not you can see if from your vantage point, there is a deep system of institutionalized racism in America, from everyday discrimination to disproportionate incarceration of people of color to people losing their lives at the hands of the police simply for being black. This is not who we claim to be as a nation. It is wrong and I won't stand for it. #solidarity #pleasevote
The Kings opened up their new arena with a 153-96 victory over Maccabi Haifa of Israel.