I have some Final Thoughts for those NFL players who decided to take a knee or otherwise disrespect our country, our flag, and our American pride on Sunday. Let me tell you why the rest of us – black, white, and brown – stand for that anthem and salute that flag. We stand to pay our respects to the Americans, of all races and ethnicities, who have paid the ultimate price to protect and defend the greatest nation on the face of the Earth. We stand to acknowledge our American brothers and sisters who can no longer stand and salute the flag or sing our anthem. We stand out of respect for the husbands, wives, sisters, brothers, mothers, fathers and children who have watched their loved ones come home in a casket under that flag. That’s why we stand.
And why do you sit? Oppression? What about taking a knee to protest the shootings and gang violence in Chicago? The violence that has run the death toll up to nearly 500 so far this year. Ya know, that gang violence and inner city crime our police officers have to respond to day in and day out. The violence they put their lives on the line to prevent and the time they spend in those communities to protect and defend the innocent men, women, and children caught in the crossfire. Do you sit for that? Or is the oppression you speak of as selective as your outrage?
Football and sports bring Americans together. Game day unites Americans of all colors and backgrounds on the field, the sidelines and in the stands. Well, up until a few players decided to throw that unity in the garbage out of misguided anger for attention.
Listen, our country still has problems but natural disasters like Hurricane Harvey and Irma prove that when adversity or struggle comes to our backyard, we band together. That’s the country you’re kneeling to disrespect and we are the people, of every color, that you’re spitting on. We aren’t a perfect nation but I challenge you to find a better one and if you do, please relocate and let me know if that country pays you millions to throw a ball.
You sit because you don’t seem to understand what that flag and that anthem mean to the rest of us. But thanks to those brave service members I mentioned, you have the right to sit like a spoiled brat and I also have the right to call you on it. Because it’s not a social justice action, it’s a misguided tantrum and it does nothing to bring us together. It only rips us apart and causes a spectacle.
To those teams and players and fans that had the decency and respect to stand for the anthem, salute the stars and stripes and respect our nation, thank you for your American spirit and love of country. It’s appreciated by many. I assure you.
For some of us, kneeling on Sunday is reserved for prayer and to give thanks to God that we live in the United States of America.