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.