So now it appears that peaceful protests are a thing of the past. At least, if you are in the NFL. In response to NFL players stance on police brutality and racial profiling, the NFL “powers that be” have come up with a rule that says if the players are on the field during the anthem, they must stand. If not, they must stay in the locker room or the team will face fines. Then it becomes an individual team decision about how it disciplines players. Simply put, the “powers that be” have decided that respecting the National Anthem is more important than respecting the rights of others to be free from violence and abuse. Why? A decline in ratings, which naturally means, less money. So, the concern is not really with respecting the National Anthem.
Of course, our President, in response to the NFL’s decision went on to add;
you have to stand PROUDLY for the National Anthem or you shouldn’t be playing, you shouldn’t be there, maybe you shouldn’t be in this country.
Stand PROUDLY! Really? I guess next we will be hearing about team fines if the players look too somber as the National Anthem is being sung.
More importantly, did the President of the United States of America really suggest that the citizens of this country go somewhere else simply because they were not standing PROUDLY for the National Anthem? This is their country too. Therefore, they have just as much right to be here as the individual that gets angry when the players kneel during the National Anthem. The United States of America is a diverse country full of people with different beliefs and ideas. Social activism is what led to many of the changes that exist in our country today:
- Voting rights for African-Americans
- Voting rights for Women
- Abolition of slavery
…To name a few
And, why is it more important to force people to stand PROUDLY for the National Anthem than it is to end:
- Gun violence
- Racial Profiling
- Police Brutality
- Education inequality
Is our moral fiber so compromised that we are more concerned with the level of respect that a person gives a song versus the level of respect a person gives another human being?
I wonder what would happen if all of the NFL players stood together and decided not to play football until this policy against peaceful protest was dismantled? After all, it seems that the “powers that be” are minimizing the value of the players.
In the words of Childish Gambino, “This Is America”.