Ever since Colin Kaepernick began taking a knee back in 2016 during the national anthem prior to NFL games, a LOT of so-called “patriots” showed outrage, believing…nay…demanding that he stood as it was played.
Kaepernick began taking a knee to protest racial injustices against black Americans. Not long after that, other athletes did the same.
At one point, Donald Trump called NFL the players who would kneel “sons of bitches” and practically demanded that they be fired. This year, he even added that these athletes should “leave the country” if they don’t want to stand for the anthem.
Yes, the President of the United States said that. Not some backwoods, moonshine-drinking, white trash, two-front-toothed, racist hillbilly. No…our country’s president. But I digress. Let’s move on.
For those of you who still support the president (after all, he did say that he could “shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and not lose voters” and well…he’s done just about everything short of that), like Trump, many of you have said and are continuing to say that the kneeling players are disrespecting the country, the anthem, the flag, and us as veterans.
Wait…so you’re speaking for us now? You’re telling us what’s disrespectful?
What’s especially funny about this is that I remember when this all began and a lot of you were quick to say this. Not long afterward, quite a few veterans (to include me) came out to say, to the effect, “WE JOINED TO DEFEND THE CONSTITUTION” or “WE DEFEND THE PLAYERS’ FIRST AMENDMENT RIGHT TO FREE SPEECH/PROTEST.” Obviously more or less may have been said with that, but that was the main point.
Even more laughable to me is that LONG after veterans have said some form of these expressions, many of you CONTINUE to say how much the kneeling is “disrespectful to veterans” as though we are not talking at all.
…speaking of “disrespectful to veterans.”
Let’s make something clear. No one is asking here whether or not you’re okay with athletes protesting racial injustices against blacks. That isn’t even the point of this, so before you type that long comment to address that, don’t.
This is about how WE AS VETERANS FEEL.
Which you likely have no idea about, because you haven’t asked. At least not until recently. Surely all those in the beginning while saying it hadn’t asked. I’ve caught MANY people in the lie as they told that one. Now of course, the lie continues in that folks are saying, “EVERY VETERAN I’VE TALKED TO SAYS IT’S DISRESPECTFUL.”
Yes, I can say that, because that is WAY to convenient that “every” veteran you’ve spoken to has said that. Not to mention, a lot of you aren’t even directly affiliated with the military in any way, or you have a friend here or family member there who served, or is serving, yet YOU managed to find that many veterans and THEY ALL said it was disrespectful?
Every last one of them?
Even if you are a veteran, don’t try and use that “every veteran” nonsense. Because I’m telling you straight-up that it isn’t true. I can post a ton of evidence to prove this. But again…how big of a coincidence is it that you just so happen to find the ONLY the veterans who agree with your stance? And keep in mind that even I’m not saying that “every veteran” agrees with me. I’m comfortable enough that I don’t need to make that up.
What this is about, is the fact that MOST veterans aren’t even addressing whether they agree with the NFL players kneeling. We are addressing OUR OATH OF ENLISTMENT:
“I, _____________, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God.”
Again, this is NOT about whether or not we agree with the players kneeling. Read that first sentence. It is about SUPPORTING AND DEFENDING the players’ rights to do so, as it is NOT against the First Amendment (part of the Constitution) for them to do so.
I don’t care how much you want them fired. I don’t care how many times you need to repeat that you will “boycott the NFL” *snickers* I don’t care how drunk and high you get to feel that you have a say in them “leaving the country.” And I don’t care about whatever else you want to bring into the mix.
What I DO care about, as many veterans do, is when you continue to hide behind us, claiming the kneeling is disrespectful, as MOST OF US say that it isn’t, mainly because we are about the OATH, which again, doesn’t address us agreeing or disagreeing with what the players are doing.
Is that too hard to follow?
Now if I said, “Y’ALL NEED TO SHUT UP, BECAUSE EVERY VETERAN AGREES WITH THE KNEELING!” then you could tell me that I was wrong. But EVERY SINGLE VETERAN has to say the Oath of Enlistment before joining. Every one. We raise our right hands and we say it.
ALL. OF. US.
If you are a veteran and you feel that the oath somehow doesn’t apply to you, you are wrong. End of discussion.
As for everyone else…do whatever it is you need to do in order to demonstrate how much of a “patriot” you are. Buy your little flags and hang them on your trucks. Raise hell about athletes kneeling during the national anthem as you continue to shop at the concession stands or remain sitting on your couches at home. Do whatever else the president has encouraged you to do in ALL his maturity.
But stop speaking for us. We don’t need your help. If you respect us as much as you claim, then do us a favor. SHUT UP and let us tell you what WE feel. If you don’t have the decency to at least talk to us about it, don’t run around claiming you know how we feel. You don’t.
Better yet…if you “love” the military and veterans so much and if you are such a “patriot,” SIGN UP.
That’s what I thought.