Time for all sides to grow up.

September 25, 2017

WSGW’s Art Lewis shares some thoughts on NFL players kneeling during the National Anthem. Email Art: art@wsgw.com

The American flag represents all of the good and bad this nation has to offer.  Much blood has been spilled to insure that it waves over a free nation.

One of the measures of a truly free nation is tolerance for those with whom you disagree.  Thus is the case of NFL players refusing to stand during the playing of the National Anthem.  I vehemently disagree with their protest.  But at the same time I must recognize their right to do so.  I must also admit that I find the NFL’s position a bit confusing.  They stand with their player’s rights to express themselves while at the same time restricting end zone celebrations after touchdowns.  Seems they want it both ways.

As to the tweets of President Trump on this issue, he has does nothing but inflame the situation, bringing even greater attention to the subject.  Networks routinely preempt the pregame ceremonies, preferring instead to play commercials.  But not now.  Every ceremony before every game was telecast this past weekend.

Finally, hats off to Alejandro Villanueva of the Pittsburgh Steelers.  This West Point graduate and former Army Ranger stood outside his team’s tunnel all by himself, hand over his heart during the anthem.  His team could not agree on how to act as a unit, so they decided to wait in the tunnel rather than be on the field.  But Villanueva knew exactly what to do.  And he did so despite his team’s refusal to join in.  And the NFL, in it’s wisdom (cough, cough) is talking about fining all those players not participating in the pregame ceremonies.  Gee NFL.  Were those players simply expressing their rights to not participate?

As the title says, it is time for all sides to grow up.  This country was built on a coalition of diverse ideas, thoughts, action and speech by a group of very diverse individuals.  Our founding fathers could agree on very little, but found a way to compromise to reach the final goal.  Maybe we should all go back to school and restudy the founding of this great country.

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