Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Regrets Criticizing Colin Kaepernick

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in 2010
Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

After previously saying that Colin Kaepernick’s national anthem protests were “dumb” and “disrespectful,” Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has had a change of heart.

On Friday afternoon, the liberal justice said in a released statement that she should not have denounced the NFL quarterback’s silent protests, the Los Angeles Times reports. “Barely aware of the incident or its purpose, my comments were inappropriately dismissive and harsh,” Ginsburg said. “I should have declined to respond.”


The Times reports that when Ginsburg was asked by reporters to give a further explanation of her original comments, she released a statement retreating from what she said.

This marks the second time in as many months that the Supreme Court justice has backed away from previously made public comments, the Times notes. During several interviews in July, Ginsburg made negative comments about Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. She told one reporter that she was considering moving to New Zealand if Trump won the presidency, and told another from CNN that Trump was a faker who “has no consistency about him. He says whatever comes into his head at the moment.”

She later thought better of her remarks, and issued a statement calling them “ill-advised.”

“Judges should avoid commenting on a candidate for public office. In the future, I will be more circumspect,” she said.


As The Root previously reported, Ginsburg was doing an interview with Katie Couric on Yahoo! earlier this week to promote her book My Own Words when she blasted the protests.

“Would I arrest them for doing it? No,” she said during the interview. “I think it’s dumb and disrespectful. I would have the same answer if you asked me about flag burning. I think it’s a terrible thing to do, but I wouldn’t lock a person up for doing it.”


Ginsburg added that there is no law keeping folks from doing “stupid” or “arrogant” things, but also said that she does take issue with the “point of view that they are expressing” during the protest.

Read more at the Los Angeles Times.

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