Hey everyone! Welcome to another edition of Fanaticsport. For the last few weeks the Colin Kapernick controversy has engulfed the nation. Regardless of how you feel about his actions, it has everyone from the President, to other football players, to your friends and family talking about it. With everyone and their brother sharing their opinions, I figured I would throw my hat in the ring and tell you what I think about the situation. I will also share some history behind our national anthem.
On August 26, San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick decided not to stand for national anthem before his team’s preseason game match up against the Green Bay Packers. In a press conference after the game Kaepernick told reporters his reasons for not standing.
“I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color. To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.” (NFL .com)
The National Debate
There are two schools of thought when it comes to the situation. The first is that he should stand because there were people who gave their lives in order to protect the flag and it is disrespectful to our country’s military if he doesn’t stand. In an open letter to Kaepernick a
retired security guard Rick Arnold summed up the pro National Anthem sentiment well when he said
“Dear Colin, I understand why you are doing this and that it is your right to protest. However, I know a thing or two about sacrifice, and your actions are misguided and disrespectful to all the Americans who have put themselves in harm’s way to keep this country safe. I realize that this country certainly isn’t perfect, but a millionaire athlete making a fuss on the field won’t solve those problems. Publicly showing contempt for the American flag is a slap in the face to all the people who selflessly defend you and your rights. Think of the dangers people face every day on your behalf—I’d be happy to tell you all about them if you need a refresher.”(The Onion) http://www.theonion.com/article/retired-security-guard-pens-open-letter-colin-kaep-53840
People who support Kaepernick’s action say that under the first amendment it is his right not to stand for the National Anthem. There is even a group of veterans who started a hashtag on twitter called #VerteransforKaepernick.
Former Airwomen turned Food Network star Sunny Anderson, took to twitter in support of Kaepernick with this tweet.
“I took an oath & served, so players on a team I don’t even like could have freedom of speech.”(CNN.com) http://www.cnn.com/2016/08/31/us/veterans-for-kaepernick-trnd/
What I think
My take on this whole situation is as follows. Dose Kaepernick have the right to sit in a silent protest before the game? Yes without a doubt!!! He doesn’t have to stand if he doesn’t want to. My issue is his reason behind not standing. He said he is not going to” stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color,” Here is where I have a problem. The National Anthem is not an ode to how great America is. It is about something much more. It is about the War of 1812 and America never relenting against the overwhelming might of enemy. Please watch this video. It will give you a whole new prospective on our national song.
Maybe Colin Kapernick should stand. If those men didn’t give their lives holding the flag up that night, he wouldn’t even have the freedom to protest in the first place.
I just wanted to point something out to before I sign off. Martin Luther King is pictured with the American flag in many of his marches as well as in his “I have a dream” speech. Even he had pride in our flag, at a time when police brutality against minorities was rampant and racism was a social norm. Why, you may ask? I think Adrian Cronauer, the man who inspired Good Morning Vietnam said it best .
“Martin Luther King, Jr. didn’t carry just a piece of cloth to symbolize his belief in racial equality; he carried the American flag.”
This is why I will show pride in my country and show that pride by respecting the flag and standing for our national anthem.
That’s it for this post. Be sure to look out for my next post !! if you like what you read, subscribe using the sidebar and be sure to like my Facebook page and follow me on twitter @Fanaticsport__ .