To take a knee or not

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By Wednesday, Oct 11 Letters  25 Comments

To the Editor:

The NFL and football in general has turned away from being a national pride. What started out with a couple of disgruntled players taking the knee during our national anthem to teams playing follow the fools. The general public in the heartland are sending a strong message against the NFL and kneeling players that they will boycott football on TV and ticket sales. Owners are now seeing revenue losses. Major sponsors may pull billions of dollars on TV ads and individual player could lose million dollar sponsorships. Remember: We The People as taxpayers built the stadiums in which they disrespect during our national anthem.

What should they do? Focus their God-given talent by returning to their community by working with students at risk, setting examples of what good citizenship looks like. NFL and its players have shown disrespect for our anthem, our flag and the brave soldiers who have died for their freedom. I don’t know the author of the following but it explains how the heartland thinks.

“When my president shipped pallets of cash to my sworn enemy, I didn’t take a knee; when my president lied to me and claimed four of my comrades were murdered because of a video insulting Muslims, I didn’t take a knee; when my president ordered that words “One Nation Under God” be removed from the pledge of allegiance, I didn’t take a knee; when my president lied to me and said I could keep my doctors and my premiums would go down, I didn’t take a knee.”

I could go on and on. In all that time I never disrespected our country, the office of the president, our armed forces and veterans, or our nation. I remained vigilant. I didn’t take a knee. I voted for a new president.

Andy Moro

Housatonic, Mass.


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25 Comments   Add Comment

  1. Laura says:

    Well said Andy….this is now getting out of hand and I personally am getting sick of it. These players makes millions of dollars and there is no reason why they can’t show a little respect for 4 minutes a week.

    1. Garnella Tomich says:

      Well said Andy is so right. I completely agree with everything he said. Garnella Tomich

  2. Richard Corey Austin says:

    How you gon have a song that celebrates the death of slaves who were naturaly fighting for their freedom be your National Anthem? Actually, the song is un- American… today, we settle, just like the “founding fathers” did. When are we gon stand up for the original lofty principals written so long ago? … scared…stop settling!
    If I were white and liberal, I would be offended that my Anthem disrespects the pursuit of freedom for any human being. Please take the time to read the entire Anthem and do some research and understand the lies our teachers told us…for God’s sake, it’s the information age!

  3. Joseph Method says:

    A lot of citations needed here. Is the public really turning away from football over the kneeling issue? I’d like to see some evidence. But more importantly, the players are *not* protesting Trump. They are protesting the disproportionate killing of black men by police. The reason why people think it’s about Trump is because Trump, being a sick narcissist, has decided to make this about himself.

  4. Tom Norton says:

    The players taking a knee are showing great respect for the country and the constitution- they have started a conversation about abuse of power in this country that needs to be made. Racism exists and is rooted amongst us right here at home- face it! Kneeling is not disrespectful its a sign of remorse in this case and showing remorse for the anger prevalent in our country today is patriotic in my opinion.

    1. Diego Gutierrez says:

      spot on, tom!

    2. Craig Okerstrom-Lang says:

      Tom, well said!

  5. Keith says:

    The players are not protesting the military or our flag.. Most if not all have charities that they give millions too.. They are using this platform to show that oppression and all the injustices that are happening in our country.. Do I like it,not so much. But whether we like it or not,our military has fought and loss of lives to give us these freedoms to protest ….

  6. Leonard Quart says:

    It may not be the most effective way of launching a protest, but it’s clear they have right to express their views. And they have chosen to do it in the place that’s closest to their work lives. In addition, our Constitution, and sense of national unity is desecrated each day by a President whose insensitivity, racism and disregard for truth and free speech has no precedent in American history. And we have had bad Presidents in the past.

    1. jennifer wade says:

      Absolutely.

  7. William says:

    If you don’t like what you are seeing, turn the station, boycott the game, whatever. Nobody is forcing you to watch it. The action the players are taking disturbs the heck out of me, but in this country they have the right to take it. Just because you don’t like something doesn’t mean that it is wrong. Try growing a thicker skin. I’m a older person and reading some or this stuff just makes me shake my head.

  8. Janice Storti says:

    This protesting by taking the knee began with black players who were invoking their first amendment right to protest brutal treatment by white police officer and unfair treatment for the blacks for simply being black. It is their prerogative to do so. Trump exacerbated the situation by his foolish challenges. I don’t know if big league sports is losing money due to this, but I do not it was not this president’s place to take on the fight. Now, many big league players are taking to the knee. In the fist place, the teams running out for the Star Spangled Banner was not their idea. There was nothing political it in. They were paid by recruiters to help them get more recruits. Andy, weren’t you the only person on the road where I, too, live who put up a sign saying yes, abolish state taxes as few years ago. Who would plow? Who would take care of the jobs the the state pays for? I am certain of it. In fact I took a picture. You were the only one on the road. Do some research, Andy!!

  9. Stephen L. Cohen says:

    I am a good friend of Andy, but could not disagree more. We cannot let the right and Trump dictate what is patriotic. Where is there any indication that the protesters hate the military, are unpatriotic or in some way un-American? Their kneeling is a protest, period. How dare this President try to define patriotism for all of us. Equally reprehensible is the silence on the left to his utterances. If the Democrats allow Trump to define anyone but his supporters as unpatriotic, we will have eight years of this truly in-American moron.

    1. jennifer wade says:

      Well said, Stephen!

  10. Stephen L. Cohen says:

    Sorry, it should have been “un-American”in the last sentence.

  11. Charles Flynn says:

    Andy, Well said. You used facts and not fiction. Thank You

  12. Joseph Method says:

    There aren’t many facts in this letter and actually several falsehoods and misrepresentations. For example, Obama didn’t order one nation under god taken out of the pledge of allegiance (not that I would mind, as an atheist). The $400 million dollars given to Iran was money that the US actually took from Iran back in the 70s. The fiction is that there is a “heartland” where everybody thinks alike about this issue.

  13. DB says:

    So if you’re outraged, turn off the channel. This is still America and you still can express dissatisfaction with current happenings and consider yourself patriotic. To think that the nonviolent expression of disagreement with this country’s racial inequality is unacceptable….is very non patriotic. We the people….(who built and paid for those stadiums ), include All Americans, black , white and otherwise. And many of us agree with these players, which is our right.
    The act of taking the knee, asks you to think outside your own little box and try to walk in someone else’s shoes for just a moment. Standing up to bullies or kneeling to protest racism is all the same…. it takes guts to take a stand or to take the knee in front of the whole, (football-watching), world. If you can’t stand to see it, don’t watch. Remember, this is a game….not compulsory.
    Using fake facts to undermine this country’s right to free speech is unpatriotic and cowardly.

    1. Charles Flynn says:

      DB, Andy recited all real facts except the “under god” reference that was debated but not implemented during the Obama Presidency. It is interesting that you bring in all of the common progressive terms used when addressing another person’s comments such as bullies and racism. So original. BTW, it does not take any guts to take a knee during the anthem. I choose to call that something else.

      1. Joseph Method says:

        There is nothing in it for the players except that their conscience calls them to do it. I know you disagree with their action but can’t you see that it would be easier for them to go with the flow? I don’t understand this talking point about how they’re millionaires so they should shut up. They’re endangering their careers and thus their wealth by err not taking a stand. Colin Kaepernik’s career is probably over. Can’t you see that it’s a principled action even if you don’t like the principle?

  14. Charles Flynn says:

    Colin Kaepernik’s career is over because he stopped being a good/potentially great quarterback. Simply put, he could not win. These players are paid significant sums of money to play a game. That’s it. Fans pay money to go to games to see them play football, not protest the National Anthem. I do not care about their conscience, their political beliefs, or their desire to go with the flow. I care only about their ability to play football and win games. If they wish to protest and express their views, I fully support that, but not on my dime. Consequently, I choose not to watch games like I used to and no longer purchase tickets which can be quite expensive.

    1. George Grumbach says:

      Charles, you are in good company with Mike Pence, although it is easier not to turn on the tv or not to buy tickets in the first place than to stage a walkout from a stadium. And it also has the virtue of not causing us taxpayers to pay for a private jet to and from Indiana in order for Pence to stage his stunt. If fans pay to watch football, as you say, why not cut to the chase and just play football instead of playing the national anthem? Why force players to take what amounts to a loyalty oath in order to play? As you say, you don’t care about their conscience or political beliefs. So why make them show their consciences or beliefs in order to do what you want — to play football? One more thing: this issue may become moot in a few years, when the dangers of concussions to players are recognized sufficiently to make the game commercially nonviable.

      1. Charles Flynn says:

        This is not about me, Vice President Pence, or concussions. It is about a bunch of football players who are paid significant sums of money to play the sport of professional football. Not to protest our national anthem. Their behavior is disrespectful to our nation, the United States of America, and to each of my brothers and sisters who have served, sacrificed, and died to preserve our great nation.

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