So President Trump has been voicing a harsh opinion against the NFL players who have been kneeling during the national anthem going as far as asking for their suspension or for them to be fired. Today, on Fox News’ Outnumbered, Republican Congressional Candidate, Antonio Sabato Jr, commented on this issue saying, “what is next? Are we gonna start burning the flag on the field? We need to stop this before it gets too bad…”
And I agree: we need to stop this before it gets too bad…although, I need to ask, where was this view in regards to black people here in America? Where was the view that said, “we need to stop this before it gets too bad” when it comes to the condition of black people here in the USA? Because while we are concerned about how badly it can get on the field in terms of expressing our view using the American flag, we need to be a nation of people who have given that same regard to the condition of the people living here in America. And, sadly, we have failed to do that specially when it comes to black people. So what is next for black people here in America? Is their condition going to become worse to a point where we will only act if their cities were to be burnt down? Are the shootings (black on black violence or otherwise) not enough for us to intervene to make their lives better? We truly need to stop this before it gets too bad.
When it comes to the American flag, the United States of America needs to hold its values as something common amongst all people who are in it. Yet, today, these values are not waving as the flag waves its red, white, and blue with every breeze that passes by; but, today, those values are wavering between two extremities under which one side lives a fairly comfortable life and under which another side is living in less than humane conditions. This is not what our flag stands for. Our flag should be a symbol of equality, justice, and liberty not a symbol of violence, injustice, inequality, and imprisonments. Who are we to tell people to stand for the flag when WE AS A NATION are not standing for the flag in terms of principles and values within our social system and within our human rights? The U.S. flag has been brought down even when it has been flown in the sky by the contradictions that we have on our land today in terms of social justice.
The U.S. Military and the U.S. Navy are not fighting for the White States of America and neither are they fighting for the Black States of America: they fight for the United States of America where, today, our internal social injustice is disrespectful towards these men and women in uniform since these men and women come from all racial backgrounds and all skin colors. When our servicemen/women stand to salute the flag, we as a nation need to kneel since we have greeted their service with a disservice that ultimately subjects them to having to put their lives on the line more so than they should. Where these servicemen/women stand to fight for our freedom, we have put many of our black citizens behind bars. Where these servicemen/women stand to protect our liberties, we have deprived many of our black citizens from being able to live the American dream. Where these servicemen/women stand to protect our safety so that we can live in a secure state, we have left many of our black citizens to live in the insecurities of danger. Where these servicemen/women stand to protect the United States of America as remaining one nation, under god, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all; we have left many of our black citizens marginalized as a secondary class of people under which they need to beg for god’s mercy to save their own lives. So who here has not disrespected these servicemen/women? And who here has not kneeled during the national anthem of our American everyday life?
To kneel or not to kneel; there is no question about it that we have kneeled as we have surrendered to the enemy of the United States—an enemy called, injustice…an enemy called, inequality…an enemy called, imprisonment…an enemy called, deprivation. And although we usually kneel in prayer to god as a symbol of weakness in the knees where our lives are ultimately in the hands of god; many have to kneel in having their lives put in the hands of injustice, inequality, and imprisonment that is not being mended by the nation they live under. So where is our social obligation? Where is our respect for righteousness? Where are these things so that we can stand tall and proud in sight of our American flag?!