In a video interview posted by Eight by Eight’s on Tuesday, U.S. women’s soccer star Megan Rapinoe scoffed at the idea of accepting an invitation from President Donald Trump to the White House if the national team wins the World Cup.
“I’m not going to the f***ing White House,” Rapinoe said when asked about the possible invite. “No. I’m not going to the White House.”
The forward added that she doubts the women’s team would be invited if they win it all. “We’re not gonna be invited. I doubt it,” she said.
Rapinoe has garnered headlines for refusing to place her hand over her heart or sing along during the national anthem before games, publicly saying her protest was an “F you” to “sexist,” “racist,” and “small-minded” President Trump.
“I feel like it’s kind of defiance in and of itself to just be who I am and wear the jersey, and represent it. Because I’m as talented as I am, I get to be here, you don’t get to tell me if I can be here or not,” Rapinoe, who is openly gay, said, hinting at her sexuality.
“So it’s kind of a good ‘F you’ to any sort of inequality or bad sentiments that the [Trump] administration might have towards people who don’t look exactly like him. Which, God help us if we all looked like him. Scary. Really scary. Ahh, disturbing,” she added, noting that she views herself as a “walking protest.”
Asked about Rapinoe’s protest by The Hill on Monday, Trump said the soccer star’s actions were not appropriate. But he did heap praise on the women’s team: “I love watching women’s soccer,” he told the outlet. “They’re really talented.”
As previously reported by The Daily Wire, Rapinoe initially began her anthem protest by kneeling, though that was short-lived due to the United States Soccer Federation amending their bylaws to forbid such action.
“Our national anthem is an opportunity … to reflect upon the liberties and freedom we all appreciate in this country. As part of the privilege to represent your country, we have an expectation that our players and coaches will stand and honor our flag while the national anthem is played,” a statement from the organization said in response to Rapinoe’s protest.
The 33-year-old said she would “respect” the guideline and has not kneeled during the anthem since, though she blasted the United States Soccer Federation’s statement as “pretty cowardly” in May.
“Using this blanketed patriotism as a defense against what the protest actually is was pretty cowardly,” Rapinoe told Yahoo! Sports. “I think the NFL does it. I felt like the statement from U.S. Soccer, and then the rule they made without ever talking to me, that was the same as what the NFL was doing — just to not have the conversation, to try to just stop me from doing what I’m doing instead of at least having a conversation, and trying to figure out a [solution] that makes sense for everyone.”