Students take a knee while performing anthem at Seattle Mariners game
© Twitter: Ryan S. Clark

Two elementary school students took a knee while performing the national anthem at a professional baseball game on Sunday.

The choir from Seattle’s Mount View Elementary School performed "The Star-Spangled Banner" at an MLB game between the Seattle Mariners and the Cleveland Indians. A Tacoma News Tribune sports writer tweeted a photo of two young girls kneeling beside their classmates during the performance at Safeco Field.

The act of taking a knee during the national anthem began more than a year ago as a protest against police brutality and racial inequality and has become a national controversy.

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NFL free agent Colin Kaepernick, who started the protests, retweeted the photo of the Seattle students.

A spokeswoman for the students’ school district told HuffPost that the protest was an “individual act” by the students and that the district “respects [their] First Amendment rights.”

President TrumpDonald John TrumpGOP lawmakers preparing to vote on bill allowing migrant children to be detained longer than 20 days: report Wasserman Schultz: Infants separated from their parents are in Florida immigrant shelters Ex-White House ethics chief: Sarah Sanders tweet violates ethics laws MORE has been harshly critical of players who take a knee in protest and feuded with the NFL during the 2017 season over the act. He repeatedly called on team owners to fire players for participating in the protests and urged the league to create a rule to ban kneeling.

The protests spread among high school and middle school athletes, with some schools or coaches punishing their students for participating.