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Red, White, & Blue Star Spangled Banner Controversy...

southwest1

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When 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick first made the decision to sit during the Natl. Anthem, I was not happy. Part of my frustration was due to fact that my father served in Korea as a med tech & historically speaking the Korean War is viewed more as a police action then a national conflict like World War I or World War II is. It is also referred to as the 'Forgotten War' meaning that veterans who served there are not fully appreciated for the sacrifices they made serving overseas away from their family & friends. In addition, I failed to see how Colin Kaepernick took it upon himself to be the spokesman for police brutality in the 21 Century, especially now as the backup quarterback vs starting face of the franchise quarterback in San Francisco. Third, Colin Kaepernick was making this display of peaceful, civil defiance not in civilian street clothes, but in his NFL uniform. A huge no no in my book. 

 

Do you remember when HOF pass rusher Reggie White who was also a minister spoke against the same sex lifestyle as a retired player wearing his #92 Green Bay jersey? Aside from a person's religious, spiritual, or even agnostic beliefs in general, it is not my place to tell anyone how to lead their private lives. My biggest pet peeve with what Mr. White did is this: By wearing a Packers jersey from the NFL team that he won a SB ring with, Reggie blurred the line between religion in his pulpit capacity with indirectly associating the Green Bay franchise with the notion that this organization endorsed or condoned discriminating against people who just happened to be gay or lesbian themselves. So, when Colin Kaepernick decided either to not stand or kneel during the signing of the National Anthem in his NFL uniform, he was disrespecting John York, the owner of the 49ers who cuts his check, pays his salary, & provides Colin a darn good standard of living. He is creating the false impression that Mr. York on company time approves of this continued act of defiance on a repeated basis. When an employer provides their employee an income to purchase a home, a car, food, & a disposable income to travel, buy nice things, help family members out financially, & have a girlfriend & a social life away from football; Colin Kaepernick should know that there is a difference between company expectations & doing whatever you want on your own time when the regular season isn't taking place. Colin's boss may not cosign everything Kaep does while wearing the burgundy & gold uniform right before a game is about to start, which is why he is actually being paid. 

 

There is nothing wrong with bringing a heightened sense of awareness against police brutality across America just don't use your employers uniform in order to spread possible solutions to ending unnecessary violence, fostering more community policing vs racial profiling & stop & frisk practices, & holding dirty & racist police officers accountable when they cross that line & murder a black man or woman in cold blood. 

 

There is definitely a double standard when it comes to pulling over a black driver vs a caucasian driver in this country. Now, I am not saying that all police officers are up to no good or use excessive force on purpose getting intoxicated with the power & the authority that a badge & firearm may give them. There are a number of fine upstanding cops out there. All I'm saying is this: Most parents of white children with drivers licenses don't have to tell their offspring to lower all their windows, place their hands visibly on the steering wheel making no sudden or abrupt movements, speak in short, respectful sentences to the police showing no rebellious tone in your voice; & concluding their interaction in one peace meaning not secretly fearing that they are about to be unlawfully incarcerated, beaten, or shot. White children 16-18 don't usually worry about their world being flipped upside down if they mouth off to a cop or decide to argue over how fast they were going when they were pulled over & the red sirens got turned on. They just don't. My oldest nephew got pulled over for transporting illegal narcotics across state lines & I wonder to myself if the driver had been my black cousin instead of my white nephew would he be dead right now? I already know the answer to this question & it infuriates me because skin color shouldn't matter one darn bit but I know how the real world works sadly. 

 

Getting back to Colin Kaepernick, is there credence to the fact that Colin started this whole red, white, & blue movement against police brutality as the 2nd string QB as opposed to the starter right now? Well, the NFL is consumed with production on the field week in week out & the league runs away from anyone or anything controversial because it doesn't wanna lose millions from sponsors as a wholesome, family friendly entertainment. Or is this just a publicity stunt by a man who isn't what he once was on a football field anymore & Colin just did this to make himself a household name off the field & become a celebrity that way? I think Colin Kaepernick genuinely believes in what he is doing & he is sincere promising to give $1,000,000 of his salary to charity designed to curb police violence. However, the reason we even know who Colin is is due to his SB appearance vs the Ravens in New Orleans during the 2012 season. So, if Kaep is no longer affiliated with the Niners anymore or any other team after this year; will we even care anymore? Probably not. 

 

My primary thesis here is this: When you are in company clothes on company time as a 49er QB, you don't have a right to use your uniform as a tool or mechanism to propel a personal issue forward. In blue jeans & a t-shirt or tie away from the football facility, Colin can endorse whatever cause or movement he wants. The difference here is that your boss may not want his logo & brand name attached to everything their field general says off the field. Now, I know what you're thinking. The NFL endorses play 60. Is it the league's business to start a campaign on TV inferring that my teenage kid is fat, lethargic, eats to many candy bars & needs to exercise more? Not really. Or what about Habitat For Humanities building homes for low income people or making homes handicap accessible for Disabled Veterans returning home from War? Isn't this an example of participating in activities that transcend football as a game & improve a community for the better? Okay sure, when you put it like that, it's easy to make the case that this act of Natl. Anthem defiance is just a way to keep black men & women alive by keeping families intact & alive. Therefore, promoting protection & self worth in local communities across America. However, can't the same platform be propelled forward by Colin Kaepernick in street clothes outside his 49ers uniform? It's not people won't know who Kaep is without his uniform & pads on man. Just like everybody who knew who Reggie White without his Packers uniform on. 

 

Thanks for listening. I appreciate it. It's cathartic just to write about provocative current events like this for me. 

 

 

 

 



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Here's my short take on Colin and what is going on: I have no problem with people protesting about something they believe in or serious matters like racism, that is everyone's right to do so. Where I have the problem is dissing the American flag. It doesn't accomplish anything and it really gets many people to dislike you and question why you are doing that. To me it's dissing the Military and the USA when you don't acknowledge the flag. All you are doing is drawing negative attention to yourself when doing so. Had Colin just went on TV or got with some politicians on TV and discussed his issues on different talk shows to get his message out and how we should go about improving the neighborhoods I would be behind him 100%. I just don't get kneeling for a flag that represents your country. Some people say it's just a song but it represents our country, where we live. If someone is that upset with the USA they can always move to a different country if things aren't getting any better for them. This country has a lot of issues but it is still gives most people a lot of leeway to say and do what they want. Colin Kaepernick isn't African American either, His mother is white, he is mixed.

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On September 22, 2016 at 8:38 PM, 2006Coltsbestever said:

Here's my short take on Colin and what is going on: I have no problem with people protesting about something they believe in or serious matters like racism, that is everyone's right to do so. Where I have the problem is dissing the American flag. It doesn't accomplish anything and it really gets many people to dislike you and question why you are doing that. To me it's dissing the Military and the USA when you don't acknowledge the flag. All you are doing is drawing negative attention to yourself when doing so. Had Colin just went on TV or got with some politicians on TV and discussed his issues on different talk shows to get his message out and how we should go about improving the neighborhoods I would be behind him 100%. I just don't get kneeling for a flag that represents your country. Some people say it's just a song but it represents our country, where we live. If someone is that upset with the USA they can always move to a different country if things aren't getting any better for them. This country has a lot of issues but it is still gives most people a lot of leeway to say and do what they want. Colin Kaepernick isn't African American either, His mother is white, he is mixed.

Thank you CBE for your response to my blog entry. I know how busy peoples daily lives are so I am grateful for feedback & different points of view on this subject matter. 

 

Max Kellerman on ESPN 'First Take' has made the intriguing argument that in America anyway the Natl. Anthem standing up during it is a mandatory gesture of compliance as opposed to a voluntary one where dissent is frowned upon & even called out publicly if you refuse to stand up while the Star Spangled Banner is being sung vocally or played through a variety of instruments.

 

If an act is required with backlash coming if you exercise defiance, where is independence & liberty being displayed individually without fear of retaliation exactly? Didn't George Washington defy King George III & call for a revolution against Great Britain's colonization & lack of religious & economic freedom which lead to the formation of the United States in 1776? 

 

Still other American scholars have made the argument that the red in our nation's union jack represents the blood of the many black men & women who paid the ultimate sacrifice through war & forced bondage to play a crucial role in the United States autonomy away from the cash crop economies of cotton & tobacco via indentured servitude that survived slavery, Jim Crow laws, & city & natl. prohibitions against unfair restrictions on unlawful voting practices, unlawful access to an equal education; unlawful employment restrictions, unlawful housing practices; & unlawful guidelines about separate lunch counters; restrooms; water fountains & basic dignity rights about human survival minus lynchings & other forms of physical & psychological torture. 

 

 

Relax, I'm not here to lecture anybody about our country's past missteps or injustices CBE. I am only pointing out what others have said about America's right to peaceful protest earned tragically through rebellion, wars, death,  & social unrest just to allow some US citizens the right to not stand during the Natl. Anthem. I like you dislike this act of defiance immensely, but that decision to not stand or kneel during the Star Spangled Banner is a choice they are entitled to exercise no matter how much others might firmly be diametrically opposed to this notion outright. 

 

I've said this before & I'll say it again: To me, the flag & honoring it through the Natl. Anthem represents the land of opportunity where immigrants with nothing can come here & make something of themselves despite language barriers, cultural barriers, geographic barriers, & gender barriers. Yes, I know. The flag also means paying tribute to the fallen [military men & women & those who made positive strides forward as leaders of social change in this country as well]. 

 

Colin Kaepernick wants to use his quarterback clout as a conduit to convey his frustrations over so many black brothers & sisters dying over minor traffic stops when more police stations across this country need to focus their attention on how to de-escaltate volatile situations more calmly & peacefully with no fatalities at all. And when a police officer oversteps their bounds of authority...There is a heavy price to pay meaning hard time behind bars in a federal prison.

 

I also know we need to find a way to peel back the onion of racial bias & prejudice among different communities too. We need to start a dialogue between the black, white, & Latino communities where a safe comfort zone is established. By that I mean, create an atmosphere where all sides can ask each other anything not as a mechanism to upset or blame each other but rather to listen to everyone's hopes, dreams, & aspirations while unpacking misconceived prejudices about another community that are not accurate or truthful at all in the interest of real growth & awareness. It may sound like a far fetched pipe dream on the surface, but it can be achieved as long as different groups from different backgrounds really listen to one another & they don't get obsessed with protecting their own point of view exclusively at all costs. Yes, I know. The first thing any group needs is to know that they are safe, protected, & no bodily harm will come to them when interacting with powerful authority figures in society or expressing a POV that may be deemed unflattering or unpopular in contemporary circles. I understand completely. Trust me. 

 

I have my first college roommate named Al who happens to be an America Indian that converse with somewhat frequently on provocative issues. I just enjoy our conversations because we respect the other person's backgrounds & life experiences & we can ask each other anything because for us it's not about a gotcha moment or look how smart I am stance. We wanna get deep below the surface & kick every rock/road block over. To quote HOF INDY head coach Tony Dungy, "are you part of the problem or part of the solution?" 

 

Thanks again CBE for jotting down your thoughts. I respect you as a writer & thinker a great deal. 

 

 

 

 

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I am getting ready to get off work so I will have to respond to your Post tomorrow in more detail but all great points. Racism will probably never go away unfortunately as there are just people in this world that are ignorant and violent. I am not sure how anyone can solve some of the violence talking place. It just seems to get worse and worse with groups of people getting shot in night clubs, theaters, etc. for no reason. White cops aren't doing themselves any favors either by shooting unarmed black men during traffic stops. It just makes matters much worse.

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On September 24, 2016 at 3:36 AM, 2006Coltsbestever said:

I am getting ready to get off work so I will have to respond to your Post tomorrow in more detail but all great points. Racism will probably never go away unfortunately as there are just people in this world that are ignorant and violent. I am not sure how anyone can solve some of the violence talking place. It just seems to get worse and worse with groups of people getting shot in night clubs, theaters, etc. for no reason. White cops aren't doing themselves any favors either by shooting unarmed black men during traffic stops. It just makes matters much worse.

Yes, that is a fair point some individuals just like to stir the pot & cause controversy & mayhem simply because their life has not turned out as well as they wish it had. Like it's somebody's else's fault that they don't make enough money or have a pretty girlfriend or any girlfriend for that matter. 

 

Look, I'm not trying to minimize any fatality white, black, male, or female & I know that being a police officer is not an easy job. I get that. I just wanna get to an atmosphere of mutual respect for human decency & dignity. The strange thing is this: The black community knows that not all cops are bad. They just want to return home safely every night & not feel singled out simply because they are driving a fancy car in an affluent neighborhood. Not all black citizens are violent criminals up to no good who couldn't possibly afford the wheels they are driving without doing something illegal. Or just because your vehicle may be run down & not new; it doesn't mean that the driver or their passengers are second class citizens to be harassed for no good reason. 

 

I also get the police side too to some extent. Any routine traffic stop from running a stop sign to a broken tail light can turn dangerous in an instant if the driver feels threatened or uneasy given recent casualties around the country right now. I just wish more cops would be willing to talk to their supervisors about police officers too aggressive & guys who need to find another line of work since they either abuse their authority or they display anger too frequently to specific segments of society. Silence is a form of acceptance & good cops have to be willing to speak out & weed out bad cops. I don't view it as taddle telling...More like making sure that the right personalities respect the shield & protect the community on the street. I've heard the counter argument to this: If a cop doesn't turn a blind eye to bad behavior, then when you're in trouble no backup will show up to save your caboose. I'm not talking about minor infractions here. I'm referring to repeated cases of excessive force against suspects & using your gun & badge as an intimidation tool to make civilians fear you. 

 

Community policing on foot goes a long way to the community viewing cops as a vital cog in the town or city along with attending local parades, picnics, games, & other social events. People need to see you as just a regular guy or girl not out to bust you, but a conduit to a safer & friendly community. Town hall meeting forums are good too as a way to clear the air & get to know the community whereby no one is looking to pigeonhole people into corners but figure out ways in which no segment of society feels unfairly categorized as a criminal from jump street & to not have 2 separate codes of justice purely based on a person's zip code, attire, appearance, or skin color. 

 

It also bothers me how some police departments have access to military grade weaponry beyond basic SWAT units across this country. It's difficult to foster an air of trust among the locals when armed vehicles are being deployed & officers come out in full riot gear to get a handle on protests. I wanna be clear here. I do not want either civilians or cops hurt or killed in any way. But, when you see a cop holding a night stick with full gear on, it's not easy to approach that & feel safe & secure as a local person now is it? 

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    • Yes, that is a fair point some individuals just like to stir the pot & cause controversy & mayhem simply because their life has not turned out as well as they wish it had. Like it's somebody's else's fault that they don't make enough money or have a pretty girlfriend or any girlfriend for that matter.    Look, I'm not trying to minimize any fatality white, black, male, or female & I know that being a police officer is not an easy job. I get that. I just wanna get to an atmosphere of mutual respect for human decency & dignity. The strange thing is this: The black community knows that not all cops are bad. They just want to return home safely every night & not feel singled out simply because they are driving a fancy car in an affluent neighborhood. Not all black citizens are violent criminals up to no good who couldn't possibly afford the wheels they are driving without doing something illegal. Or just because your vehicle may be run down & not new; it doesn't mean that the driver or their passengers are second class citizens to be harassed for no good reason.    I also get the police side too to some extent. Any routine traffic stop from running a stop sign to a broken tail light can turn dangerous in an instant if the driver feels threatened or uneasy given recent casualties around the country right now. I just wish more cops would be willing to talk to their supervisors about police officers too aggressive & guys who need to find another line of work since they either abuse their authority or they display anger too frequently to specific segments of society. Silence is a form of acceptance & good cops have to be willing to speak out & weed out bad cops. I don't view it as taddle telling...More like making sure that the right personalities respect the shield & protect the community on the street. I've heard the counter argument to this: If a cop doesn't turn a blind eye to bad behavior, then when you're in trouble no backup will show up to save your caboose. I'm not talking about minor infractions here. I'm referring to repeated cases of excessive force against suspects & using your gun & badge as an intimidation tool to make civilians fear you.    Community policing on foot goes a long way to the community viewing cops as a vital cog in the town or city along with attending local parades, picnics, games, & other social events. People need to see you as just a regular guy or girl not out to bust you, but a conduit to a safer & friendly community. Town hall meeting forums are good too as a way to clear the air & get to know the community whereby no one is looking to pigeonhole people into corners but figure out ways in which no segment of society feels unfairly categorized as a criminal from jump street & to not have 2 separate codes of justice purely based on a person's zip code, attire, appearance, or skin color.    It also bothers me how some police departments have access to military grade weaponry beyond basic SWAT units across this country. It's difficult to foster an air of trust among the locals when armed vehicles are being deployed & officers come out in full riot gear to get a handle on protests. I wanna be clear here. I do not want either civilians or cops hurt or killed in any way. But, when you see a cop holding a night stick with full gear on, it's not easy to approach that & feel safe & secure as a local person now is it? 
    • I am getting ready to get off work so I will have to respond to your Post tomorrow in more detail but all great points. Racism will probably never go away unfortunately as there are just people in this world that are ignorant and violent. I am not sure how anyone can solve some of the violence talking place. It just seems to get worse and worse with groups of people getting shot in night clubs, theaters, etc. for no reason. White cops aren't doing themselves any favors either by shooting unarmed black men during traffic stops. It just makes matters much worse.
    • Thank you CBE for your response to my blog entry. I know how busy peoples daily lives are so I am grateful for feedback & different points of view on this subject matter.    Max Kellerman on ESPN 'First Take' has made the intriguing argument that in America anyway the Natl. Anthem standing up during it is a mandatory gesture of compliance as opposed to a voluntary one where dissent is frowned upon & even called out publicly if you refuse to stand up while the Star Spangled Banner is being sung vocally or played through a variety of instruments.   If an act is required with backlash coming if you exercise defiance, where is independence & liberty being displayed individually without fear of retaliation exactly? Didn't George Washington defy King George III & call for a revolution against Great Britain's colonization & lack of religious & economic freedom which lead to the formation of the United States in 1776?    Still other American scholars have made the argument that the red in our nation's union jack represents the blood of the many black men & women who paid the ultimate sacrifice through war & forced bondage to play a crucial role in the United States autonomy away from the cash crop economies of cotton & tobacco via indentured servitude that survived slavery, Jim Crow laws, & city & natl. prohibitions against unfair restrictions on unlawful voting practices, unlawful access to an equal education; unlawful employment restrictions, unlawful housing practices; & unlawful guidelines about separate lunch counters; restrooms; water fountains & basic dignity rights about human survival minus lynchings & other forms of physical & psychological torture.      Relax, I'm not here to lecture anybody about our country's past missteps or injustices CBE. I am only pointing out what others have said about America's right to peaceful protest earned tragically through rebellion, wars, death,  & social unrest just to allow some US citizens the right to not stand during the Natl. Anthem. I like you dislike this act of defiance immensely, but that decision to not stand or kneel during the Star Spangled Banner is a choice they are entitled to exercise no matter how much others might firmly be diametrically opposed to this notion outright.    I've said this before & I'll say it again: To me, the flag & honoring it through the Natl. Anthem represents the land of opportunity where immigrants with nothing can come here & make something of themselves despite language barriers, cultural barriers, geographic barriers, & gender barriers. Yes, I know. The flag also means paying tribute to the fallen [military men & women & those who made positive strides forward as leaders of social change in this country as well].    Colin Kaepernick wants to use his quarterback clout as a conduit to convey his frustrations over so many black brothers & sisters dying over minor traffic stops when more police stations across this country need to focus their attention on how to de-escaltate volatile situations more calmly & peacefully with no fatalities at all. And when a police officer oversteps their bounds of authority...There is a heavy price to pay meaning hard time behind bars in a federal prison.   I also know we need to find a way to peel back the onion of racial bias & prejudice among different communities too. We need to start a dialogue between the black, white, & Latino communities where a safe comfort zone is established. By that I mean, create an atmosphere where all sides can ask each other anything not as a mechanism to upset or blame each other but rather to listen to everyone's hopes, dreams, & aspirations while unpacking misconceived prejudices about another community that are not accurate or truthful at all in the interest of real growth & awareness. It may sound like a far fetched pipe dream on the surface, but it can be achieved as long as different groups from different backgrounds really listen to one another & they don't get obsessed with protecting their own point of view exclusively at all costs. Yes, I know. The first thing any group needs is to know that they are safe, protected, & no bodily harm will come to them when interacting with powerful authority figures in society or expressing a POV that may be deemed unflattering or unpopular in contemporary circles. I understand completely. Trust me.    I have my first college roommate named Al who happens to be an America Indian that converse with somewhat frequently on provocative issues. I just enjoy our conversations because we respect the other person's backgrounds & life experiences & we can ask each other anything because for us it's not about a gotcha moment or look how smart I am stance. We wanna get deep below the surface & kick every rock/road block over. To quote HOF INDY head coach Tony Dungy, "are you part of the problem or part of the solution?"    Thanks again CBE for jotting down your thoughts. I respect you as a writer & thinker a great deal.         
    • Here's my short take on Colin and what is going on: I have no problem with people protesting about something they believe in or serious matters like racism, that is everyone's right to do so. Where I have the problem is dissing the American flag. It doesn't accomplish anything and it really gets many people to dislike you and question why you are doing that. To me it's dissing the Military and the USA when you don't acknowledge the flag. All you are doing is drawing negative attention to yourself when doing so. Had Colin just went on TV or got with some politicians on TV and discussed his issues on different talk shows to get his message out and how we should go about improving the neighborhoods I would be behind him 100%. I just don't get kneeling for a flag that represents your country. Some people say it's just a song but it represents our country, where we live. If someone is that upset with the USA they can always move to a different country if things aren't getting any better for them. This country has a lot of issues but it is still gives most people a lot of leeway to say and do what they want. Colin Kaepernick isn't African American either, His mother is white, he is mixed.