Photo: Paul Sancya/AP

Before Sunday’s Falcons-Lions game, eight Lions players took a knee during the national anthem. Defensive tackle Akeem Spence was among them, and today he said his father, who’s a contractor, was denied a job because of the demonstration.

Spence said his protest had nothing to do with either the flag or the military, which, sadly, is still how many choose to interpret the very specific gesture. After the game, he said he and his teammates chose to kneel in order to “stand up for what’s right, man.”

“No disrespect to the flag, no disrespect to any of the veterans or anything. It was just right is right, wrong is wrong, and what the guy said about us as NFL players, I just feel like that’s something that’s us, as NFL players, we have to stand up for that’s not what we are,” Spence said. “You know what I’m saying. We’re human beings. We give back to the community.”