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OPINION | By Mike Reed
In the more recent media coverage of the NFL players’ “Taking a Knee” conversation going viral and references considered that the “Taking a knee ” somehow is a violation of being Patriotic as well as being anti-American” if one does not stand for the national anthem while it’s playing.
Taking a knee in silent protests is about the question of justice and fairness, a strong symbolic gesture for addressing the injustices, social, economic and political scales leaning heavily out of balance for people of color, their wages earned, neglected communities, health care, educational excellence, the closing of under-served community parks and the lack of resources and attention to better serve the needs, goods, services, and protections that will usher balanced social, economic and psychological behaviors and growth patterns.
On the NFL conversation, I would ask if “Taking a Knee” is unpatriotic or view the sports world/entertainment industries people of color as anti-American and should be “fired” or “boycotted” because they are exercising their constitutional “First Amendment” right…then I would also ask, “Why not garner the same passion and distaste with the exact fervor when many of the Congressional leaders, the Wealthy, Privileged, Cabinet Leaders, House Reps, Governors and Senators themselves either dodged the draft, never enlisted…fled or had their children to flee to the Canadian border or elsewhere… in order to not serve their country – but willing to stand and condemn “taking a knee” in silent protest signifying equal justice and treatment guaranteed by the Constitution of these United States?
Think about the draft dodgers and the pursuit to elude serving the most just, free and wonderful country, and ask yourselves “Was that a Patriotic and Proud Stance” or did they too exercise a more cowardly demonstration of “Taking a Knee” in order to reject serving Patriotically while many evangelicals, bigots, xenophobes, racists and right-wing nationalist are opposed and critical of the silent protests?
Sounds like a new age ploy for reconstruction the ideals of “White Supremacy” and “Jim Crow” acts in new packaging… only this time this new action includes exploiting poor whites that do not see themselves as in a class with people of color but desire to see their “white” status as privileged and above other racial groups.
Yes, White folks, I know you are rejecting my premise [some not], but those of you who are bristling over my remarks, but if you really think deeply, you will begin to see and feel the same reality….”You have become one of us and maybe you too, should take a knee and join the march for JUSTICE and EQUAL TREATMENT for ALL” !!!
“Taking a knee” is a First Amendment Constitutional Right.
Let’s look past all the diversionary rhetoric, race-baiting and divisive tactics and use the constitutional rights as our guiding principles. In my mind, this is a cloaked conversation based on RACIAL DIVISION AND DIVERSION GIMMICKRY.
Unity, Friendship, and Love for thy Neighbor is what our clear vision should become as the GOAL….