As long as we’re talking about “respect” for the flag, the country and our “great military” …
I want to interject a brief point about where I see this discussion heading.
Donald John Trump canceled a visit by the Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles this week because many of the players dislike his criticism of those who protest police brutality against African-American citizens. He then wanted to stage a rally that called attention to love of country.
Fine. But why are some of us casting doubt on the players’ love of country? Why do we presume they intend to disrespect our military men and women or that they don’t love the country that gives them the right to protest in the manner they choose?
I am not presuming any such thing, but I am hearing such presumption coming from the president and those who endorse his view that pro sports team owners ought to “fire the son of a bi*** who doesn’t stand during the playing of the National Anthem.
This is unfair in the extreme to make such a presumption about the athletes who are as entitled to speak out as any citizen.
Love of country takes many forms. You have the “love it or leave it” mantra on one end coming from those who believe the nation is without flaw, that it cannot improve, that we shouldn’t strive to achieve “a more perfect Union.”
You also have those who recite another mantra that seeks to make this country better than it is. I consider myself a patriot who loves this country more than any other nation on Earth. I went to war for my country and I make no apology for any criticism I choose to level at those make decisions on my behalf while serving in the government for which I am ultimately responsible.
To question the motivation or the patriotism of those of us who find fault with our leaders and who seek a different path toward effective governance is, dare I say, un-American.