Megan Rapinoe is a great — but needlessly, selfishly divisive — athlete

Representing your country is a privilege, not a right. If she really feels she can’t show respect for the US flag and anthem, then she shouldn’t wear the US jersey, either.

Here is the worst part. What she is doing is selfish. Her protest comes at a time when the US women’s team has taken an important stand against gender discrimination.

They are suing the US Soccer Federation because, despite being more successful on the field than the men’s team, and bringing in more revenue, they are paid significantly less than the men. They have a point, and the World Cup is a chance to rally the country behind their cause.

But instead of unifying Americans behind her team’s admirable fight for gender equity, Rapinoe is dividing Americans with her anthem protests. Untold numbers of Americans who might have been inspired to support the team’s cause have been alienated by its leader.