Embattled singer Chris Brown chose to sit during the singing of the nation anthem on Sunday, September 11, at the 5th Annual Power 106 Celebrity Basketball Game in Los Angeles.
Brown became the latest entertainer to lend support to 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s protest of racial injustice and police brutality.
Before he sang “The Star-Spangled Banner,” R&B star Tank delivered an impassioned speech urging the crowd to stand in respect for the men and women who lost their lives in the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001.
“I understand everybody’s exercising their right to stand or to sit, and exercising their right to freedom and justice,” Tank said. “But in the wake of 9/11, please understand and respect the fact that real men and women and children lost their lives for this very thing that we’re able to stand for today.”
As Tank sang, Brown remained seated and was seen laughing as others around him stood up.
— Us Weekly (@usweekly) September 12, 2016
Despite the 27-year-old clapping at the end of the national anthem, online reaction to his decision to sit was harsh.
The Royalty singer has since responded to the self-inflicted flap, posting a screen-grabbed photo of himself at the charity game with the caption that reads, “Stay classy!”
Brown’s behavior over the years has been mired in one controversy or another.
Last month, Brown was in the middle of a standoff with the Los Angeles Police Department. Officers rushed to the singer’s L.A. mansion after a woman claimed Brown pointed a gun at her and threatened her.
The incident resulted in a contentious standoff between Brown and the LAPD. He was arrested on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon. The singer posted several profanity-laced videos online, disparaging law enforcement and praising Black Lives Matter.
“I ain’t did sh*t, I ain’t gonna do sh*t, and it’s always going to be f*ck the police. Black lives matter,” Brown said.
Brown also cursed the police a few months ago, while urging Donald Trump protesters to travel in large groups as a means of protecting themselves from threats of violence.
Brown reportedly captioned one of his online rants, “F–k Trump and f–k the pigs. To see this evil sh–t is so wrong! God will have his revenge! Trust me!”
Follow Jerome Hudson on Twitter: @JeromeEHudson.