As we approach Veteranís Day weekend, Iím trying to get past why Iím so offended by the stance taken by many players in the National Football with regard to their protest of our American flag and national anthem.
Itís not a political party or presidential issue with me. Itís all about NOT showing respect to those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice.
Maybe itís so disturbing to me because of my opportunity to travel this great country and visit many places that still do respect our flag. My son laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery and shouldnít the 220,000 graves there still garner the respect of all Americans?
The 3rd U.S. Infantry Unit seems to think so since they march in perfect step guarding the tomb 365 days a year, 24 hours a day, rain or shine. We canít get these NFL players to stand for 3 minutes.
Or maybe it was my visit to the Vietnam Wall with its 58,000 names and the father who is weeping, standing in front of his sonís name carved in stone forever.
Is standing during our anthem that honors all these men, women and their families really too much to ask? Maybe it was visiting the World War II Memorial with 85 World War II veterans who still remember many of the 406,000 of their brothers and friends who never came home.
Shouldnít some of these NFL players ďat least pretendĒ like they care about the sacrifices made on their behalf instead of ďfidgeting and looking totally defiant.Ē
I wish many of them could walk down the entrance to the Omaha Beach Cemetery in Normandy, France, look to the left, and see the American flag and 9,387 graves in perfect alignment with the headstones pointing toward America. Iíve seen French citizens proud to stand for our national anthem while U.S. citizens who are employed by an American corporation ďtake a kneeĒ and seem to be proud of it.
And finally maybe itís waiting for the body of a local soldier to return home with an American flag draped across his or her coffin. Youíd think youíd earn some respect from those who are currently allowing you to play a kids game in a billion dollar stadium.
By not standing and being attentive during our national anthem, NFL players are disrespectful to all those who have paid the ultimate sacrifices in the past, present, and future.
I believe these players have a right to protest, but that doesnít make it right. There are social injustices that must be addressed but this is not the best way to accomplish solving these problems.
Any organization that supports this show of disrespect for our flag and the national anthem will get absolutely no financial support from me. Feel free to boycott all NFL games on Veterans Day weekend (everyday) and also any sponsors associated with the NFL.
From a guy who has always liked NFL football, this is still an easy decision for me not to support an organization that will allow itís employees to be disrespectful to so many Americans.