(WJBK) - The director of the Michigan State Police has apologized for sharing a post on her Facebook page that called NFL players protesting during the national anthem "degenerates."
The message shared Sunday by Col. Kriste Kibbey Etue calls the players "millionaire ingrates who hate America and disrespect our armed forces and veterans." The posting signed "we the people" also calls the protesters "rich, entitled, ungrateful."
The post prompted calls from activists and others for her firing.
A statement from Etue late Tuesday said it was a mistake to share the post and she'll "continue my focus on unity."
The taking of a knee during the national anthem was started last year by former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick to draw attention to social inequality and police treatment of blacks.
This past Sunday, several Detroit Lions players kneeled during the national anthem and linked arms with standing players, the coach and team owner - part of a unified protest against comments made by President Donald Trump, who suggested last week that NFL owners should fire players who kneel.
Lions owner Martha Firestone Ford was among numerous owners to issue statements supporting the players' right to protest.