Colin Kaepernick Takes Stand By Sitting During National Anthem

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San Fransisco 49er’s quarterback Colin Kaepernick is under fire after refusing to stand for the national anthem. Check his  Twitter feed  if you’d like to follow some of the action.

In true American fashion, within hours people were burning his jersey, he was mocked for daring to care about the oppression of others while he himself is a multi millionaire, memes were circling the internet showing wounded warriors going to great lengths to stand for the anthem while Colin Kaepernick is “able bodied, yet refuses”

But if you ask me? I’m impressed.

Because to be frank, patriotism isn’t that great. Nazi’s and North Koreans are very patriotic, what’s so great about that? Is a dutiful Nazi better than our unpatriotic and treasonous founding fathers who very un-patriotically told THEIR country to  “F off”?

Kaepernick was quoted as saying the following:

“I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses Black people and people of color,” Kaepernick told NFL Media in an exclusive interview after the game against Green Bay. “To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.”

The 49ers issued this statement: “The national anthem is and always will be a special part of the pre-game ceremony. It is an opportunity to honor our country and reflect on the great liberties we are afforded as its citizens. In respecting such American principles as freedom of religion and freedom of expression, we recognize the right of an individual to choose and participate, or not, in our celebration of the national anthem.”…

“This is not something that I am going to run by anybody,” he said. “I am not looking for approval. I have to stand up for people that are oppressed. … If they take football away, my endorsements from me, I know that I stood up for what is right.”

Showing integrity and using your platform  to make a difference in the world vs  merely using it for  your  own self promotion, is nothing to be ridiculed, disdained, or mocked. It should be commended.

Wasn’t this the same attitude our founding fathers had when their government became intolerable and oppressive? Why are so many people able to applaud these actions from over 200 years ago, but vilify the same spirit of righteous indignation and demands for justice when they see it in people today? . What is weak about a man abiding by his conscience, even to his own detriment?

As a Christian, I see pledging to a flag as a form of idolatry. A person’s postal address has nothing to do with the content of their character. A flag is nothing to die or kill for. My allegiance is to God, and the values I believe in – truth, liberty, and justice. My thoughts on flags, anthems, and allegiance aligns with that of Arundhati Roy when she said the following:

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Like Kaepernick, I also often times do not stand for the anthem. It’s not something I hold particularly strong feelings about, for example,  if I’m in the middle of a conversation with a friend at a game and the anthem comes on, I likely wont sit and will just stay standing. But if I’m not otherwise distracted or am already sitting down? – no way I am standing up just to talk to a piece of cloth. I’m not the only one. Last year I wrote a story about a New Hampshire girl who refused to stand..Linked here: Teacher Takes Action Against Student Who Refused to Stand for Pledge of Allegiance

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Here is another quote from Kaepernick I would like to share:

“My faith is the basis from where my game comes from. I’ve been very blessed to have the talent to play the game that I do and be successful at it. I think God guides me through every day and helps me take the right steps and has helped me to get to where I’m at. When I step on the field, I always say a prayer, say I am thankful to be able to wake up that morning and go out there and try to glorify the Lord with what I do on the field. I think if you go out and try to do that, no matter what you do on the field, you can be happy about what you did,”  Kaepernick told Daily Sparks Tribune in 2012.

I do believe Kaepernick should be proud of his actions on the field Friday. I believe he took a much bolder stand against injustice by sitting than he ever could have by standing and saying the pledge like everyone else.

Ironically, Kaepernick also showed a firm intolerance for systemic injustice and oppression – values shared by the often praised founders of our country – how very “American” of him.

arundhatiroy

 

Dismiss The Concerns Of Black Lives Matter At Your Own Peril

Unchecked power and authority impact all of us; on both a visceral and physical level. Admittedly, I myself am engulfed with frustration and rage against those who spread the attitudes and lies that allow injustice to proliferate. Those whose inaction is validated by their misplaced sense of security. Security derived only from themselves not being the current target.
It is indeed true, that an injustice anywhere is an injustice everywhere. I am disappointed in the majority of our population in their failure to see such a truth. Disappointed in their failure to remember history. Disappointed in their failure to hold vigilant watch against any form of unruly government powers. And disappointed by how fervently they latch on to talking points, yet forget sound principles. They name the oppressed their enemy and have forgotten the true enemy.
 
“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”
I am not called a selfless person by many people, hardly anyone now that I think about it. So it is not out of “white saviorism”, “white guilt”, or selflessness  that I support the Black Lives Matter movement and others who share my desire for a more accountable, safe, prosperous, and just society. It is because of my own hatred for injustice and my own instinctive self preservation that I stand for any cause that seeks to eradicate the entities and practices that exist to the detriment of its people. It is because every time  I see  a person killed or brutalized by the state a piece of my soul dies. And  while the black man today… may be the  most likely and vulnerable victim of the state’s brutalities, he certainly is not the only victim..
White children, boys and girls, have been murdered in their sleep due to careless no knock raids. Unarmed, non threatening, and non violent Hispanic and white women have been killed, rendered to a vegetative state, had their teeth knocked out, and their skulls cracked by those who claim to serve and protect us. Young white men with bright futures have been killed, others put into a comas for infractions as innocuous as a broken taillight.  Acts as innocent as picking up ice-cream on a first date have ended in the execution of white men. It wasn’t long ago, the state awarded a 3 million dollar settlement to a white woman’s family after she was fatally shot 6 times in the head and neck by a plain clothed officer for improperly parking in a church parking lot.
While I do not say this to dismiss the undeniable and factually sustained claim that blacks are the ones who currently suffer most from an overbearing, inherently immoral,  and corrupt police state. The truth is, every year the police kill far more whites than any other race. Blacks are killed at a much higher rate, but because they are a much smaller percent of the population, they do not account for the majority of police killings.
So yes, police abuse and brutality should concern all of us. And yes, as it stands today, police abuse does have the most oppressive impact by far on the black community. This is why we should listen to the warnings of Niemöller, learn from mankind’s past mistakes,  and understand history teaches over and over, we will all ultimately be subject to whatever we tolerate. Such a poignant message is more critical now than ever before.

First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Socialist.

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.

– Niemöller

Many refuse to acknowledge the horror inflicted upon our society’s most vulnerable, out of a fear of igniting a war on police. but even with the increase in tensions, officer fatalities have been at an all time low the past several years. And, as shown in statistics ranking professions by their risk of fatality,  as of 2016, it is significantly more dangerous to be a landscaper than a police officer.
The rhetoric is hype.
Used to scare us into placing justice in the backseat, and into accepting the oppression inflicted upon entire communities as a necessity for peace. To tell us silence is needed because the pursuit of justice would not be worth the cost. That justice should be sacrificed at the alter of peace. Yet, Christ taught wisdom must be pure before it can be peaceable.
When a man stands on the sound principles of human dignity, liberty, the right to privacy, the right to be secure in his own persons, government accountability, and the truth that we are all created in the image of God. Then the onus of changing for the sake of peace is on whoever stands against him. What value is a peace that survives only on  acquiescence to evil?
It was the same charge given by white plantation owners against those who sought to eradicate slavery.  To be labeled disruptive to the peace is a charge that will always be hurled toward anyone who stands for justice in an unjust world. Because where there is injustice there is the society in which it was established and tolerated. Where there is injustice there is the status quo and the system that sustains it
So yes. There will be division. There will be disruption. The blame for which is not on those who seek a just and accountable society. That blame is on the man whose peace is placed in a world sustained by corruption, greed, violence, and hatred. It is up to him to search his heart, acknowledge the error of his ways, and do everything within his power to be a man of justice every day forward.
 If you are of the belief that all men are created in the image of God. Then trust in that principle more than the false narratives of corporate whores in the media. And instead start asking questions.  Why would you believe law enforcement can do no wrong when Jesus Christ himself was crucified by men dutifully enforcing the law?
If you believe all men were created in the image of God why do you tout off statistics like, “90 percent of black people killed every year are killed by other blacks,” without putting it in context by also mentioning that, “84 percent of white people killed every year are killed by other whites.”
Why bring up a statistic in response to someone’s murder? Does any statistic invalidate their right to justice? Does any statistic have the power to make something wrong, no longer wrong simply because it is one of many? The next time a white person is murdered by an authority figure, do you believe it is wrong to get upset or seek justice because a single murder is “frivolous” in comparison to the  “white on white crime rate” ?  
When you see a mother devastated by the murder of her innocent son at the hands of police, or a black man going about his business shot for no reason before your very eyes, yet feel nothing more than the urge to repeat an ingrained talking point; it is time to question who you have allowed yourself to become, and what you have allowed yourself to believe. These pundits who claim Christ, yet do nothing but support evil, spread misinformation, and perpetuate intentional lies,  will not be there for you on the day you become the state’s unfortunate target.
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“The wicked flee when no man pursueth but the righteous are bold as a lions”