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Many Seattle Seahawks fans bombarded the KING 5 Facebook page Sunday, declaring they were not watching Sunday's Seahawks-Titans game because the team chose to stay in the locker room for the national anthem.
During a halftime analysis on Facebook Live, KING 5 Sports anchor Chris Egan and sports producer Joel Knip were asking for fans' reaction to the game, which Tennessee was leading 9-7. But what they got was a slew of comments from upset fans. It comes after players across the league took a knee during the anthem or stayed in the locker room in response to President Donald Trump's call for players who conduct such protests to be fired.
Related: Seahawks ratings take a hit Sunday
Trump also called for fans to boycott. It seems many of those fans are listening. Several of them responding during the Facebook Live simply said they were "not watching." While some did not express the reason why they weren't watching, others made it much more clear.
"Leaving the seahawks behind," said Carmen Behnke.
"Turned TV off when I saw they stayed in the locker room for the National Anthem. Bye bye Seahawks. Final insult," said Beth Fehr.
"Bye bye hawks, burning the 12 flag tonight. You don't respect my flag," said Curtis Martin.
"Turned them off! Flags taken down keep our Sunday entertainment separate from politics!" said Karin Elliff.
"People gave their lives to protect and honor this flag....now we have silly football players thinking they can disrespect it??? Some nerve!" said Tiffanie Rind.
As he read the comments from fans, Egan declared he's never seen anything like it from Seahawks fans in all 17 years covering the team.
But there were some fans who said the protest didn't make a difference. Some even supported the move.
"Seahawks, thanks for standing up for everyone!" said Deborah "Morrison.
"Dissent is patriotic that is what makes our country great," said Ray Lee.
"I support my hawks," said Kimberly Van Luven.
"Kneeling or not I will watch, not hurting me. Their loss," said Jan Cohen.
Some just wanted the conversation to stick to sports.
"omg can we talk about the game? said Cameron McManus.
And at least one saw this as an opportunity.
"Anyone quitting the Hawks please send me your tickets," said Andrew Roseberg.
The NFL ratings came out Monday morning. Ratings for the Seahawks in the Seattle market were down from last week and from Week 3 of last year, but national NFL ratings were mixed.
Another passionate fan on Monday morning burned a Seahawks hat outside the KING 5 studios. Although we didn't get a chance to ask him why, he saluted as he burned the hat. Anchor Jake Whittenberg recorded the moment on Facebook.
Mixed reviews at popular Seahawks hangout
At Hawks Nest West, a bar along Alki Beach in West Seattle, the pregame protest got mixed reviews from fans.
“I think that they're standing for something they believe in, so more power to them,” said Melissa Lauer, who watched the game at Hawks Nest West, a bar along Alki Beach in West Seattle.
The crowd missed the moment so many people are talking about. They were busy watching a different game and then flipped the channel as soon as the Seahawks took the field. But most fans were well aware of why this game day was different.
“I feel that when anybody has the ability or the platform to say something important they should,” said Nakean Wickliff, who sat at the bar.
Next to him, Anthony Townsend disagreed.
“I think it's starting to get a little out of control, to be honest with you,” he said.
Though many people here support their team, on and off the field, there are some who think the team is out of line.
“I'll continue to watch, but you start to lose respect for some of the players,” Townsend said.
Others supported the Seahawks' pre-game statement.
“If I had a platform like that and I felt like there's injustice going on I would feel obligated to do that,” said Chris Reiff.
“I think everybody has a right to stand up for what they believe in, and I am married to a veteran, and he very much feels the same way, that's why he joined was to allow people to the freedom of speech,” said Brittney West.
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