Tag Archives: NFL

Are You Standing for the NFL?

American Flag proudly flying above the U.S.S. Constellation in Baltimore, Maryland’s Inner Harbor.

I’d like to have a word with Americans today.  And when I say Americans, I not only mean citizens of this great Country, I mean citizens who are loyal to the Country and its Government.  Because you are the only true citizens.  Because that is what it means to owe allegiance.  It means to be loyal to the Government.  If you are not loyal to the Government, you are not a true citizen of the county.  You may be an anarchist or a revolutionist, but certainly not a citizen.  Because a citizen is loyal to their Government.

Here in the United States of America, we have many methods of demonstrating our loyalty to our Country, our Government, and our Ideals.  However there are three undeniable expressions of loyalty that every American has agreed upon for decades, that expresses our loyalty and our Allegiance to our country and our government.  And those three expressions are (1) To serve in the United States Military (the Armed Forces of the United States of America – the United States Navy, the United States Army, the United States Air Force, the United States Marine Corps, and the United States Coast Guard).  If you serve in the defense of our country, and you serve honorably and loyally, you are proven to be a loyal citizen of this great country.  As a matter-of-fact, we have had a program in our past where we have extended citizenship to foreign nationals who have served honorably in our Military.  My wife has Filipino family members who are U.S. citizen today because they served in the United States Military.  (2) To salute and revere our flag.  Acknowledging our flag has been considered for decades to be a sign of patriotism towards our country.  And to salute our flag has always been considered to render a military salute for military members in United States Military uniform and to place ones right hand over the heart for citizens not in United States Military uniform.  And by standing, if one is capable of doing so, while rendering said salute, while facing the flag.  And (3) by reverencing our National Anthem in like kind.  These three methods of showing patriotism for our country has never been debated seriously in our history.

The acts of some of our professional sports players, most notably those in the National Football League (NFL), to not follow these practices (Jaguars, Ravens kneel at UK game) is, by definition, a disrespect to the American flag, the American National Anthem, and our country.  It can be perceived as nothing less.

The citizens of the United States of America have many divides over the course of our history.  However, other than the United States Civil War (where the South actually succeeded, set up their own government, and had their own flag), we have never not respected our country through our differences.

I have had lots of differences with my country during my lifetime.  Abortion for example.  I believe abortion cheapens life and kills innocent, defenseless, human babies.  And yet I’ve never knelt before the United States flag.  The assault on my Christian values.  Which I believe has led to many of the problems we experience today.  And yet I’ve never disrespected our National anthem.  And the protests against our great Military, during the Viet Nam War, and the wars that have followed.  And yet I have never not honored my country.  I love my country, as is evidenced by my actions and what I do.

I married a Philippine citizen (who is now a Naturalized American Citizen).  And we have traveled to the Philippines many times over the years to visit family and friends.  On some of those trips we have attended festivals where the Philippine National anthem was played.  I have stood respectfully, but I have never placed my hand over my heart or recited the pledge to their flag.  To do so would be to disrespect my country.

When American Football players stand on foreign soil (the United Kingdom) and kneel when the United States National Anthem is played, it is not only disrespectful to our country, it is tantamount to renouncing their citizenship.  And when they stand and place their hands over their hearts for the United Kingdom’s National anthem, it is not only disrespectful to our country, it is tantamount to pledging their allegiance to a foreign country and government.

The same is true for our members of Congress or any other citizen who does not honor our flag, our anthem, or our Government.

We must find ways to work together to overcome our challenges, but disrespecting our country is not one of them.  That is quitting the team.  We must support the team and work with it to make it a better team in the end.  And thankfully, here in this country we have the freedom to do just that.

Consider this, what if one of those NFL teams had some differences amongst the players on their team?  And what if some of those players chose to protest those difference by wearing the jerseys of a rival team?  How far do you think that would go?  What if they were to bring out the flag or team colors of a rival team and place them over their own team colors?  How long would it be before their teammates, coaches, staff, and owners sat down and had a word with them?

We may have differences, and we may have problems, but we are still Americans and we should still honor our country.  And quite frankly, if you cannot, then I invite you to leave and let those who do honor our country to hold up the flag.  Let me know how far you get in any other country on Earth disrespecting their flag, anthem, or government.  I’d suggest you try North Korea first.

Do You Stand with the NFL Today?  I hope not.  I hope you boycott the NFL until they learn to stand at attention with the rest of us, for the United States Flag.  If you want to kneel, try the altar at your local Church.

The Big Game

Here we are and it is Super Bowl Sunday and most of America is excited about the big game.  Most people that are excited about the game are cheering for their favorite team to win.

I am cheering for the Seattle Seahawks to take home the trophy.  Not that I have any particular ties to Seattle, Washington although Microsoft, Inc. is headquartered near there and a co-worker at another company went to work for them and encouraged me to do the same.  I thought better of it at the time.

However neither do I have any particular tie or rivalry with the Denver Broncos although Denver is a couple of hours north of Colorado Springs, Colorado where I actually did have a firm offer from a company that I turned down and ended up in Richmond, Virginia instead.  Denver, CO might have had another appeal in that Seymour Cray had moved there and was doing some exciting work with bio-molecular memory.  Sadly, he died in an automobile accident a few years before I had the opportunity to move there.

No, I am looking for a Seattle Seahawks win simply because in conversation with my cousin I discovered he was cheering for the Denver Broncos and I couldn’t possibly let that stand, now could I?  I had picked the Seattle Seahawks as a favorite for the Super Bowl rather early on in the season though.  And everyone likes to pick a winner.  It doesn’t hurt that my neighbors a couple of streets up (whom we will be watching the big game with) are from Denver and are cheering for the Broncos.  A little friendly rivalry will make the game all the more exciting.  As for my cousin, we have a bet (a gentleman’s bet between family members) for some Rocky Patel Cigars.  Specifically three Rocky Patel Edge cigars.  Winner take all, no spread on the points.  My cousin is not a cigar smoker so I’m not sure what he was thinking.  If he wins, he’ll probably just turn around and send them back to me for my birthday.

As an amusing aside, someone at work did point out to me that both states that have now legalized the recreational use of Marijuana are the two states that are sending teams to the Super Bowl.  I’m not sure what that means other than the fact that fans in both states are going to wake up tomorrow morning wondering if their team won or not.  Of course I suppose the same could be said for alcohol use, but that is a thought for another time.

No, as I was saying, I turned down the job offer in Colorado Springs and took one in Richmond, VA where a few years later I had the opportunity to make the acquaintance of Terry McAulay who is the referee in today’s big game.  You can find Terry’s career stats here.  Terry is also a graduate of Louisiana State University where my sister is a College Professor today.  It is interesting how choices in life work and how things tie together.

Thanks for wading through my past life choices.  If you’ve made it this far and I still have your attention, what I wanted to get to was the Big Game.  And by that I mean the Big Game of Life.  Sure the Super Bowl is exciting, however we all have the opportunity to play in the most exciting arena of all each and every day.  And that is the arena of Life.

When I was in grade school I was an avid reader.  One of the most impressionable books I remember reading is Get in the Game by Bill Glass.  Bill Glass was a Defensive End for the Detroit Lions and the Cleveland Browns.  Bill wrote a book about his NFL career, but more importantly he wrote a book about the game of Life.

His point in the book was you can never win the game if you never play the game.  Many people will complain about never having the opportunity to play.  And Bill talked about that in the book as well.  He pointed out all the players in the NFL that sat on the bench and never took the field.  But they were IN the game.  They went to practice, they worked hard, they were with the team, and they were there, ready to play should the coach decide to put them in.

In Matthew 25:14-29 Jesus Christ likens God’s Kingdom to a rich ruler who entrusts his talents to his servants while he is away.  When he returns, the servant he is angry with is the one who did nothing with the talent he was entrusted with.

We are all entrusted with talent in life.  We did not necessarily get to choose which talents we were given.  However we are all responsible for the talents we have.  And we cannot do anything with those talents unless we get in the game.  This is primarily one of the reasons I started this blog.  Because win or lose, I at least want to be found to be in the game.

I don’t know if your team will win or lose today.  I hope my team does.  I don’t even know if you have chosen a team or if you even care about the game.  What I do know is we are all responsible for the Game of Life.  And there will come a day of reckoning when we all have to give an accounting for the talents we’ve been entrusted with.  And unless you Get in the Game, you may have a hard time with the coach.