Through the years, we have been conditioned to believe that patriotism has been equated with military, police, first responders, etc. In fact, the government had for years funded the patriotic display of military at NFL venues. Why do we limit the role of patriotism to those categories of people? Why are we not honoring teachers, engineers, social workers, etc? Isn’t patriotism larger than this? Martin Luther King Jr was a patriot. I know some teachers, administrative assistants, graphic designers, and artists who are also patriots. I think that anyone that makes their country stronger is a patriot.
What makes America stronger? Unconditional support for everything that goes on in America? No. Absolutely not. The reason we have our Constitution is to protect us from the government. People in the military protect our freedoms so that we can voice our concerns and display our disagreements without fear of government oppression. Think about it… Martin Luther King Jr protested against our government for the honor and dignity of African-Americans and nobody can really say he was in the wrong. He was certainly a patriot because he helped make America stronger.
If you want to boycott the NFL, you have every right to do it. Just remember that really good innocent people get hit by your actions as a result. The effect is not limited to NFL owners, players, and coaches, but also cafeteria workers, janitors, graphic designers, accountants, and so many more! If you can’t sit down at their dinner table and eat with them and tell them and their families that their jobs may suffer because of your boycotting, then maybe you should reconsider. That is why I don’t like boycotting. If you are siding with Kaep and boycotting the NFL, remember that 70% of the players are African-American and they do a lot of good with their wealth in their communities and families (See Deshawn Watson as an example). If you are boycotting the NFL because you think people are dishonoring the flag, maybe your view of patriotism needs to expand.
Sports and patriotism, as defined by the presence of military, police, and first responders, has been inflated together to a point that nobody can separate the two. I have never gone to work anywhere and was told that we had to stand for the national anthem. But we expect athletes to do it. After all, they’re just entertainers… no, to them they are also considered employees and contractors.
I’m tired of believing fake stories like George Washington chopped down a cherry tree or being conditioned that Christopher Columbus discovered America when human beings already existed there. And I also don’t want to believe that patriotism is defined by certain parameters of people, even though our government wants us to believe so.
So if people want to protest the National Anthem to voice their displeasure at racial injustices in America, I am all for their right to do it. For myself, I will stand for the National Anthem. If you somehow believe that racial injustice does not exist anymore, then you are part of the problem.
I know the news media inflates stories of racial injustices and perceived racial injustices of African-Americans and they love to create controversy, but that doesn’t mean that racial injustices don’t exist or are not real issues to African-Americans.
If you have never walked in the shoes of those with opposite views from yours, then it is hard for you to grasp. Try sitting down and discussing these issues with one another. Calling people SOBs because you refuse to understand their perspectives is just childish. If we can sit down and show some empathy and understanding about how each other feels, then we can only make America stronger.