More than 200 NFL athletes took a knee during the National Anthem over the weekend in a public display of protest over President Trump’s comments.
This incredible show of disrespect by US citizens is incredible, considering athletes from other countries have more respect for our National Anthem, according to the Gateway Pundit. Usain Bolt, a sprinter for Jamaica at the 2016 Olympics, interrupted an interview to show respect to the US National Anthem that started playing.
According to the New York Post, athletes all over the world representing the US took a knee during our own National Anthem over the weekend. Most prominent were the nearly 200 NFL players and employees who took a knee and the WNBA team Los Angeles Sparks who completely ignored the Anthem.
Most surprising is the protest at the NFL international matchup game in London between the Baltimore Ravens and Jacksonville Jaguars. Some of the players on both teams knelt during the US National Anthem while standing to show respect for the British National Anthem.
The mass disrespect this weekend was astounding. Protesters claimed to have participated for a variety of reasons, most common was to show strength and unity, stand up against racial injustice, and simply to oppose President Trump.
Olivier Vernon of the New York Giants was one of three players on his team who knelt during the National Anthem at their game. He told reporters it was to prove Trump couldn’t tell him what to do: “I’ve been raised the right way. I know what’s right and what’s wrong. Ain’t nobody ever going to scare me. I don’t care if he’s the president or not. You ain’t my president.”
Landon Collins, another player for the Giants who knelt, said kneeling was an emotional thing to do but did it to show unity: “There’s nothing that says we’re saying we disrespect our country. It hurt me to take a knee. I was about to break down in tears. I love this country. But at the same time, we respect each other, and we have a family over here, and we’re gonna fight for each other.”
Yet the unity players were expecting likely caused animosity among the fans. Reports came in during the Patriot vs. Texan game that fans were booing kneeling players chanting for them to “Stand Up!”
Though the athletes are free to protest and display their grievances however they wish, it’s odd they would choose the National Anthem as the vehicle for said protests. By their own statements they wanted to show unity, to fight racial injustice, and oppose Trump and every single one of them did so by disrespecting the military and the great country we live in.
What does it say about our great nation when the athletes representing us abroad and acting as role models for our youth disrespect our country and the brave men and women who gave them so much? What does it say when a Jamaican athlete shows more respect for our National Anthem, despite having experienced none of the liberties and benefits from living in the US, then a multimillionaire football player obviously benefiting from the freedoms of being a US citizen?
This incredible disrespect will likely cause a division among fans and players that will have serious ramifications for the NFL. It wouldn’t be surprising to see the league take a serious hit as the fan base abandons the organization after their disrespect for the country; the country that enabled them to exist in the first place.