Column: NFL games intensify as players kneel and raise fits

Column: NFL games intensify as players kneel and raise fits

By Kiley Hill, Social media managing editor

I believe in citizens’ right to freedom of speech and to protest peacefully. While I may not agree with some of the beliefs brought up by the protesters, it makes me a proud American that they are taking real action and sharing their thoughts with the public.

Last year, Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco 49ers’ quarterback decided he would take a knee during the national anthem to show he was against police brutality and racial inequality.

Now a year later, the NFL protests have become more widespread when over 200 players sat or kneeled in response to President Donald Trump’s calling for owners to fire the protesting players.

While there are different opinions on what the benefit of kneeling actually is, I believe as Americans they are disrespecting the flag which represents what they have today.

The American flag represents more than the President they hate, more than the policies they wish would change; the flag is more than politics.

The flag flies because of our military. Our flag represents those that have fought for us to be the country we are today. When people disrespect the flag, they are disrespecting the brave people who have and continue to sacrifice life and limb for our country.

Players get penalized for dancing in the end zone and disrespecting the referees, but to do those things is their 1st Amendment right, but they do not do it unless they want to face consequences.

Why is there a consequence for taunting the field, but no consequence for scorning our country?

Our country is filled with hate right now and it has been that way for years. Something needs to be done about the hate and narrow-minded people in our country; there is no argument about that. However, I do not believe we need to divide the country even more to fix that.

What has kneeling actually done to fix the hate? Sure,  it addresses the problem; it’s made it known. But has there been a change in the hate? The kneeling, the not coming out onto the field, everything these players are doing is causing more division in our country.

I should be able to watch a game without arguing with my sister whether it’s okay or not to kneel.I should be able to watch a Sunday night football game without having to watch players disrespect my country.

While I get what these players are doing, and I also understand why there are some people that support them. But there are better ways, more beneficial ways to address this problem and protest.

This protest disrespects America and all that the flag represents; they need to find a better way to protest what they believe.