Let’s look at the bigger picture here.

Hey look, some sanity!

I encourage you to watch these three minutes from Dallas sportscaster Dale Hansen talking about what Trump doesn’t understand about the national anthem and the right to protest, courtesy of Media Matters for America.

Dallas sportscaster Dale Hansen talking about what Trump doesn’t understand about the national anthem and the right to protest.

And by the way, just a little reminder: the Pledge of Allegiance to the American Flag says “…indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

That’s the whole point of Colin Kaepernick’s protest — as a country we’ve lost sight of those values, and we can’t look the other way among wrongdoings against African Americans and minorities in the United States. If Colin or anyone one chooses not “to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color,” then that’s their right to do so. It’s not being disrespectful to our military – its because of our military and everyone who’s fought and died for every American’s rights of equality, life, liberty and happiness that he and anyone else can choose do so.

As Dale states in this video clip:

“The young black athletes are not disrespecting America or the military by taking a knee during the anthem; they are respecting the best thing about America.”

I think the 49ers original statement last year about Kaepernick’s protest said it the best:

“The national anthem is and always will be a special part of the pre-game ceremony. It is an opportunity to honor our country and reflect on the great liberties we are afforded as its citizens. In respecting such American principles as freedom of religion and freedom of expression, we recognize the right of an individual to choose and participate, or not, in our celebration of the national anthem.”

And now we have a president trying to take away Americans’ right to peacefully protest against something they/we feel is wrong by saying they should be fired for doing so, through social media of all things. He’s saying that any protest you don’t agree with, is a protest that should be stopped. Those thoughtless remarks not only miss the entire point of the protests, but creates more division in our country than ever.

For the record, I love my country, I love our flag, and I love our military – and I bet most, if not all, of those athletes protesting last weekend do too. It’s a reminder that we need to be doing a better job as a country (for which the flag stands) of being “indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” And Trump needs to be doing a better job of being a president — for everyone. Maybe he can start by actually reading the Constitution.

Let’s maybe look beyond the symbolic gesture being made during the national anthem and more at the larger issue the protest is representing, and do something about it.

About Thomas Kelleher

Ad Man | Author : www.tomkelleher.com
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