Monday, 25 September 2017

Trumping the Knee

So Donald Trump having seen the majority of NFL players take the knee, link arms or not appear on the field and run a weak D*.

He has tweeted (what else) the issue of kneeling has nothing to do with race. It is about respect for our Country, Flag and National Anthem. He tweeted this immediately after the tweeted that some fans booed during the National Anthem at those same players.

Now let me get something straight here:

Taking the knee is something those that serve the Country and Flag do to show respect. Respect to fallen comrades.

The take the knee movement that started last pre-season in the NFL after a summer in which a number of innocent African-Americans were shot by white police officers. It started with one player and has spread, this weekend including Baseball and with the backing of other sports.

Also during the civil rights movement in the 50s and 60s taking the knee was non-violent protest of people praying and contemplation.

So Mr Trump is ignoring history and ignoring reality if he says taking the knee has nothing to do about race.

But here's another thing what about those players who didn't take the knee. Many of them this weekend stood behind and beside their team mates. Instead of hand on heart as normal many of these linked arms. Just like this:

Yes as Martin Luther King Jr and others marched to Selma they too linked arms in the same way. The symbols that teams across the NFL showed on Sunday from London to LA have everything to do with race. The continued racism of some and oppression of black America.

Some of those who have song the Anthem in recent weeks have also started to take the knee. So you can sing the Anthem showing you love for the nation and still protest that the America you want can be better, can be greater.

Now back to those who booed the plyers who took the knee. A lot of this happened during the national Anthem. Not a peaceful protest but a verbal one. Surely that is disrespecting the flag, country and anthem.

So Donald if you truly want to make America great you have to do so for all Americans. You have to respect all the cultures that make up the culture of America. Respect those who exercise their freedom of speech as enshrined in the Bill of Rights to protest peacefully, even if that protest is against you. Indeed you should defend their right to protest, even if you disagree with what that say as long as they do it in a peaceful, non-violent way, even if that protest is aimed at you. That Mr President is democracy. That Mr President is the land of the brave and the home of the free.

If you respect their rights as enshrined in the Bill of Rights maybe then you will show the respect to your office that is yours in passing.

*Defence for non-NFL fans

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