If you watched the Olympics opening ceremony on Friday, Feb. 9, you might've noticed that tensions ran high when both North and South Korean athletes marched together under one united flag. However, the tension didn't come from the competitors; it came from Vice President Mike Pence. That's right, our VP made the special moment a tad uncomfortable when he decided not to stand for the Korean Olympians as they made their big entrance. Instead, he sat during the ordeal while South Korean President Moon Jae-in and and North Korean officials stood up and applauded their joint team. Of course, Twitter has a few words about Pence's choice to stay put, and these tweets about Mike Pence not standing for Korean athletes at the Olympics opening ceremony prove how ironic the moment was.
Before we tap into Twitter, let's talk about why it's ironic that the vice president neglected to stand up for North and South Korean athletes. It all has to do with a controversial October night when he straight up left a football game because of players protesting during the national anthem. I know it's been a few months, so if you need a quick refresher, I'll tell you this: Back in September, Trump made it loud and clear that he was upset with NFL players who didn't stand during the national anthem. He said that kneeling protesters disrespected the flag and country. The president's beef with protesting NFL players seems to have stemmed from Colin Kaepernick, the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback who knelt during the anthem in 2016 to protest police brutality and racial bias.
OK, now that we're all caught up, let's continue. On Oct. 8, 2017, Mike Pence and his wife, Karen, attended a San Francisco 49ers game against the Indianapolis Colts. Prior to the game, Trump asked Pence to leave if any players knelt during the anthem. Of course, Pence listened (duh). After at least 15 players from the 49ers knelt on the field, Pence and his wife fled the stadium. Talk about dramatic.
In a tweet, he explained his decision to leave:
At a time when so many Americans are inspiring our nation with their courage, resolve, and resilience, now, more than ever, we should rally around our Flag and everything that unites us. While everyone is entitled to their own opinions, I don't think it's too much to ask NFL players to respect the Flag and our National Anthem.
So, basically, Pence got all fired up when NFL players didn't stand during the national anthem at the game, but didn't think twice about staying seated while Korean athletes unified at the Olympics opening ceremony. Twitter cannot handle the irony, and these tweets prove it.
"For a guy who gets so mad about someone taking a knee, he sure is comfortable taking a butt."
Some people are straight up furious.
"Mike Pence couldn't handle NFL players sitting during the anthem to protest injustice yet he was fine with sitting while Korean athletes united to promote peace."
"So embarrassed for my country."
"How is him sitting any different than the #NFL taking a knee?"
"Pence sitting through a unified Korea parade is peak pettiness."
"Amazing Mike Pence is still so shook from that Colts game where people refused to stand to respect a flag that he still can't stand to respect a flag."
Oh, the irony. Twitter is feeling it.
Whether Pence remained seated to make a point or not, you can't deny the fact that people are pissed. Some can't get over the hypocrisy, and others can't handle the disrespect. Either way, he doesn't seem too fazed by the criticism.
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