Sports | March 1, 2021 12:25 pm

US Soccer Council Member Seth Jahn Removed After Controversial Speech About Race

Jahn played for the U.S. seven-a-side ParaOlympic team at the 2015 Parapan American Games

US Soccer Council Member Seth Jahn Removed After Controversial Speech About Race
Paralympic soccer player Seth Jahn poses for a portrait at the 2016 Team USA Media Summit.
Sean M. Haffey/Getty

U.S. Soccer Federation Athletes’ Council member Seth Jahn, who played for the seven-a-side ParaOlympic team at the 2015 Parapan American Games, has been removed from his post after giving a controversial speech about race and his apparent issues with some of the social-justice campaigns that have dominated pro-sports storylines in recent years.

Jahn, a 38-year-old from Florida, spoke out before 71.3% of the USSF board voted to affirm an earlier decision to repeal a policy requiring players to stand during the national anthem.

“I’m sure I’m going to ruffle some feathers with what I’m about to say, especially given the athletes council that I’m on, but given the evolution of our quote unquote, progressive culture where everything offends everybody, those willing to take a knee our for anthem don’t care about defending half of our country and when they do so, then I don’t have too much concern in also exercising my First Amendment right. We’re here to get a different perspective. I also feel compelled to articulate that I’m of mixed race and representative of undoubtedly the most persecuted people in our country’s history, Native-Americans.”

He continued …

“I keep hearing how our country was founded on the backs of slaves, even though approximately only 8% of the entire population even owned slaves. Every race in the history of mankind has been enslaved by another demographic at some point time. Blacks have been enslaved. Hispanics have been enslaved. Asians most recently in our country in the freaking 20th century, have been enslaved. Natives have been enslaved. Whites have been enslaved. Shoot, I lived in Africa for 2 1/2 years where I could purchase people, slaves, between the price of $300 and $800 per person, per head depending on their age, health and physicality. Where were the social justice warriors and the news journalists there to bring their ruminations to these real atrocities? And yet in all of history, only one country has fought to abolish slavery, the United States of America, where nearly 400,000 men died to fight for the abolishment of slavery underneath the same stars and bars that our athletes take a knee for. Their sacrifice is tainted with every knee that touches the ground.”

In addition to removing Jahn from his role, the USSF issued a statement further distancing itself from his comments.

Jahn has been active on Twitter since making his speech and issued an “apology” letter for his remarks.