The phrase "Brittney Griner hates America" is trending nationwide. The release of the Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA) star, who had been detained in Russia since February 2022 for drug possession, has been one of the most controversial in recent years.
President Joe Biden told the media that the athlete was traded for Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout, nicknamed "The Merchant of Death." Brittney's return to the country has cost the Biden Administration a barrage of criticism. Some say that prioritizing her release over that of former Marine Paul Whelan - who was detained in Moscow by Vladimir Putin's regime while serving the country - is a huge mistake.
"Brittney Griner hates America"
The phrase "Brittney Griner hates America" comes to light due to a comment the basketball player made during the 2020 WNBA season. Griner spoke positively about the elimination of the mandatory singing and listening of the national anthem at the beginning of games:
Honestly, I don't think we should play the national anthem during our season. I think we should take that position.
In addition to not wanting to have to hear it in the WNBA, Griner believes the national anthem has no business being present in sports in general:
Personally, I don't think it should be in sports. Blacks had no rights at the time. It's a song that didn't even represent all Americans when it was first made.
Some Americans did not take kindly to Griner's comments about the national anthem, which is considered a symbol of American identity, tradition and patriotism.
"America-hating lesbian pothead"
When there were already rumors circulating about how the exchange of prisoners would take place, an anchorwoman from One America News - a television channel that is no longer on the air - referred to the player as an "America-hating lesbian pothead" and recalled that "Griner protested the U.S. flag and anthem, telling the WNBA that such hateful symbols had no place in that league."
That the Biden Administration went into action over a woman who spat on our flag and anthem, but left behind a Marine who would die for that same flag and anthem, and they see nothing wrong with that? An exchange??. A convicted Russian arms dealer, also known as the merchant of death, in exchange for a drug-addicted lesbian who hates America.
On OAN's last day on cable, Chanel Rion called Brittney Griner "an America hating lesbian pothead." pic.twitter.com/cv7AHRjP6P
- Bee (@mount_bees) August 1, 2022
Former President Donald Trump also disagreed with the decision to release Griner. In July he stated that it was an "unpatriotic" action and suggested that Paul Whelan should have been released instead of Brittney:
What kind of deal is it to trade Brittney Griner, a basketball player who openly hates our country for the man known as 'The Merchant of Death. What a stupid, unpatriotic embarrassment to the United States!