SWANSEA (CBS) – A Swansea man hosted a jersey burning party in response to the recent protest by the New England Patriots.
Shane says he was “shocked” that the Patriots protested and said they “always stayed above this kind of nonsense.”
More than 100 people turned out to support Shane and show their frustration with professional athletes who are kneeling during the national anthem. They sang America the Beautiful and said the Pledge of Allegiance as they tossed Patriots gear into the fire in protest.
He told WBZ he was happy with the turnout.
“I think it was a great success,” Shane said. “I think people were united, I think people love our country and I think it sends a great message to the NFL and any divisive type actions will not be tolerated during sports.”
Upset Patriots fans came from all over Massachusetts, many in attendance were veterans.
“Some of those young kids they don’t know what us old guys went through,” said Arthur Dallaire of Swansea.
“It upsets me that they, I understand we do have issues with this county that need to be resolved and I think that’s not the platform to be doing it,” said Andy Lavoie of Westport.
Some people showed up just to support Shane’s right to free speech.
“I’m probably not the biggest fan of what he is doing, but I think he has the right to do it,” said Kathy Cardenas of Swansea.
Not all the jerseys and Patriots gear were burned during the bonfire. A box was put out to collect some of the items so they can be sent to some of the victims of the recent hurricanes.