It’s safe to say the entire world of the NFL went nuts with players protesting police violence by taking a knee. It’s also safe to say that the alt-right has used this as an opportunity to turn it into their own political agenda.
It’s safe to say “stick to sports” and I understand as sports is a get away from the real world. The world that does include politics. Fans just want athletes to get on with it and entertain the masses.
The truth is politics is in our sports culture every day.
Jessie Owens used his 4 gold medals to break the myth of German superiority in the face of Hitler.
Babe Didrikson Zaharias was the first break the gender barrier in the PGA and constantly faced misogynistic criticism because it’s not “feminine to play sports” She played on.
Muhammed Ali missed out on boxing for 3 years for being a contentious objector during Vietnam.
“Why should they ask me to put on a uniform and go 10,000 miles from home and drop bombs and bullets on Brown people in Vietnam while so-called Negro people in Louisville are treated like dogs and denied simple human rights? No, I’m not going 10,000 miles from home to help murder and burn another poor nation simply to continue the domination of white slave masters of the darker people the world over. This is the day when such evils must come to an end. I have been warned that to take such a stand would cost me millions of dollars. But I have said it once and I will say it again. The real enemy of my people is here. I will not disgrace my religion, my people or myself by becoming a tool to enslave those who are fighting for their own justice, freedom, and equality. If I thought the war was going to bring freedom and equality to 22 million of my people they wouldn’t have to draft me, I’d join tomorrow. I have nothing to lose by standing up for my beliefs. So I’ll go to jail, so what? We’ve been in jail for 400 years.”
Jackie Robinson who was a veteran did stand but stood silent and did not salute the flag.
As I write this twenty years later, I cannot stand and sing the anthem. I cannot salute the flag; I know I am a black man in a white world. — Jackie Robinson
Carlos Delgado did not stand for “God Bless America” in protest of the Iraq war.
Need I go on?
“But I’m a fan. Politics and sports don’t affect me.” Think again.
Who builds for a new stadium when a new team comes to town? The debate of taxpayer vs privately funded is political.
We the fans also like to politicise the race, gender, and sexual identity the athlete. The very existence of athletes that are not straight, white, cis, or male is politically debated every day.
“You spit in the face of vets when you kneel”
During world war II our veterans fought against the Fascist states of Germany, Japan, and Italy. In these states, political opposition was silenced. No individual was allowed to protest. The media was silenced through censorship. Information is limited. Most importantly, the people were brainwashed by the government to believe that the state is above all else. Worship and saluting of the state and its symbols was a requirement.
We see this now in our nation with the administration pushing such agenda. Only certain forms of protests that worships the racist heritage of the state are allowed. Where the political opposition is ridiculed and not respected. The media is actively under attack for not agreeing with the administration. And people are morally required to stand for the flag of the United States. It’s quite disturbing how we are embracing the morals of the very countries that threaten our very freedom and our way of life during the 1930s and 40s.
The beauty of the American culture is that it is set up to allow protest in a peaceful manner. From the taxation protests of the Crown, the Civil Rights Movement to The recent Kneeling of NFL players during national anthems. Peaceful protest has been the way forward. The guiding principal founding fathers put to build “A More Perfect Union” It is set forth in our bill of rights as our first amendment.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
The first amendment is in a list of ideals our country set forth to achieve in our constitution. It is broad for a reason. So long as we don’t endanger the safety and security of others we may protest in any way we see fit.
Our founding fathers realized that our allegiance to a man or political party is a dangerous path.Today we see examples of this in dictatorships around the world where freedom is non-existent. That is why our armed forces defend the constitution instead and the principals set forth in it instead.
Free speech also gives the administration the right to have an opinion. For an administration oppress whoever speaks out against them, however, is to become the very thing that our country fought against when our nation was under threat during the revolution and the second world war. To voice the opinion that anyone should be morally oppressed for simply kneeling is to show gross incompetence.
In my opinion, the right wing of America needs to take a knee and have a good long look in the mirror. To get this far where denying peaceful protest is the norm is to take the constitution and rip it up metaphorically. Pride for a nation can be healthy. However, it is our duty to stand up for all of American values including that “All men are created equal”. To stand up takes sometimes it takes a statement of science and keeling. The “this doesn’t pertain to me” attitude needs to stop now because it affects all of us. Let me be clear here, by creating a further divide in our nation, America will turn on itself and quickly become non-existent.
P.S. Those who now have joined the Dallas Cowboys bandwagon have entered into a hell hole of mediocre football. You may support the strongest team in your division but your offense is like Jekel and Hyde and your defense is pedestrian at best. Can’t wait for the playoff choke.