Veterans took to social media to rally behind Colin Kaepernick after the 49ers quarterback was accused of being anti-military in his protest for racial justice.
Kaepernick has been taking flak from all directions — from fans, teammates and former coaches to police associations and Donald Trump — for sitting during the national anthem before a preseason game last week.
Of the various criticisms, some have accused Kaepernick of disrespecting U.S. veterans — something the NFL star has emphatically said was not his intention.
But former service members got behind the embattled athlete on Tuesday with the hashtag #VeteransForKaepernick. Many tweeted pictures of themselves in uniform.
The hashtag was a top trending topic around the globe overnight, with many of the posts receiving thousands of retweets.
Many made the point that they had served to protect freedom of speech.
And others took aim at the press and other social media users.