The controversy about kneeling in protest while singing the national anthem was exacerbated by the comments of the New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees who said I would never agree with anyone who did not respect the flag of the United States or our country. Many athletes, such as teammates Michael Thomas and Malcolm Jenkins and NBA superstar Lebron James, made speeches and separated Bree for her comments. Many problems are related to racism and police violence in the United States. There is still a long way to go to put an end to these problems, but kneeling on the hymns of protest is not the solution.
The continued protests and violence are largely linked to the excessive use of force by retired police officer Derek Chauwin on 25 March 2007. Mei, who knelt George Floyd for eight minutes and 46 seconds… It seems this led to the death of George Floyd. As a white man I was desperate to see that and that Derek Chauven was kneeling around George Floyd’s neck because of his African-American race. Initially Chauvin was accused of murder in the third degree, but since then the charges have been brought in the second degree. Shovin should be charged with the full extent of the law.
In the obvious images, which few people have seen, George Floyd was first put in a police car and beaten by a policeman before he was laid down on the ground and forced to kneel.
The incident with George Floyd led to protests in the United States and around the world. Every citizen has the right to protest peacefully, and every sensible person should protest against changes in what happens to people of a different colour. But some of these protests have gone too far.
Buildings are burned down, shops are looted and violence occurs, which is not necessary because it does not bring justice. It’s more trouble than it’s worth.
Kneeling to protest during the debate on number
The subject of kneeling came to the fore when Colin Kepernick knelt for the first time to protest the national anthem in the preseason game of 2016.
At first Kepernick sat down next to the hymn, but after a conversation with Nate Boyer, a long-haired ex-soldier, he knelt down.
He said he fell on his knees to protest against police brutality against colored people in the United States. Since he started this movement, many NFL players have followed his example and knelt down during the national anthem in protest. Others joined the arms or raised their fists during the hymn to join the protest. He even got down on one knee at the MLB, where Bruce Maxwell knelt for the 2017 game to protest the national anthem. Neither Kepernick nor Maxwell are currently playing in their leagues.
Disrespect for persons in service
When playing the national anthem, whether it is a sports competition or any other event, one thinks of those who serve their country so that they can live freely and in peace.
The hymn also embodies the unity of the country, without distinction of origin, religion, culture or race.
The United States has about 800,000 police officers protecting their cities, communities, states and borders. When we hear the hymn, we think of the people and thank them for our freedom and protection. So when the hymn is sung, they stand still and bow. Although the police are cruel and there are policemen like Derek Chauven who use the human race as an excuse for excessive violence, these policemen represent only a very small majority of the 800,000 people.
When we listen to the national anthem, we also think of the soldiers who make it possible for America to be a country free of terror and war, so that American citizens can live in peace and tranquillity.
We also honor the soldiers who died in defense of the United States in all the wars that have taken place. America wouldn’t be the same without their sacrifices.
As far as the sport is concerned, many athletes have expressed an opinion on whether it is acceptable to get down on one’s knees to play the national anthem. Star hockey player Austin Matthews of the Toronto Maple Leaves said kneeling before the national anthem was a disgrace to the military battle for the flag. His family was in the army. The same goes for the retired African-American MLB K.K. Sabatia, who said he would not kneel during the national anthem because a member of his family served in Iraq.
The national anthem also introduces politicians who serve their country, state or city.
Although they do not risk their lives, they represent the citizens who have chosen them in their function to rule over who and what they represent. Although not everyone agrees with everything he stands for, it is always rude to get down on one knee when he represents not only what he is supposed to represent, but also the citizens he represents.
There is a problem in America.
It cannot be denied that there is a problem of racism in America. The death of George Floyd at the hands of a white policeman is one of the few cases of police brutality and repression of African-Americans. There are policemen who abuse their power and show excessive violence against people of different colours.
One way of drawing attention to this issue would be to set up a committee of those in power to combat racism and ensure justice. For example, several NBA coaches have recently established a committee on racial injustice, including Gregg Popovich, Steve Kerr, David Fizdale and others. These people are highly respected in their field and could find ways to fight and end racism. Other major industries, such as other major sports leagues, should follow the example of the NBA and form a committee of coaches, players and others to combat racism.
These committees should be set up not only in sectors such as sport, but also in other sectors which should focus on combating racism and injustice.
Rich people like Jeff Bezos, Warren Buffett, Bill Gates and other extremely rich people need to get together and think about how to end racism. With the wealth and power (to some extent) that these people have, they can donate large amounts of money to charities such as Black Lives Matter, LGBTQ and others who fight racism and also devise their own forms to put an end to racism.
In the White House, President Trump must prepare a bill/legislation to condemn racism in all its forms and to form a group of people from different backgrounds to show diversity and unity. Other federal governments should also take similar measures, as mentioned above.
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