Recently, the news has been focusing on the NFL. Not only is it because football season has officially begun, but, certain players have decided to not acknowledge the national anthem. It all began with Colin Kaepernick, who is quoted saying: "I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color." There are many people who agree with this statement. Yes, there is oppression of people of color in this country. Only an ignorant person would deny this fact. That does not mean, however, that a person should not show respect during our national anthem. The national anthem is not meant for people to display their political views. The national anthem is played so we can show respect for our flag, our country, and the many men and women who fought and sometimes died for this country. By not standing during the anthem, he disrespects our flag and our soldiers. Here is something that the protesters should think about. World War I, a time of great oppression for any person of color. Black people were not allowed to do many things, including: vote, marry a white person, live in certain neighborhoods, sit anywhere they wanted in public, drink from certain bubblers, go to school with white people, etc. Black people had absolutely no reason to be proud of this country. They were killed because of their skin color and people just looked the other way. However, when the call to arms came for Americans, black people joined the forces. They proudly risked their lives to fight for their country. However, when these brave soldiers came home, they were still treated as second class citizens. The situation for their race had not improved.
World War II came about, and once again, American were called to arms. Instead of sitting at home and doing nothing, over 2,000 people of color enlisted in the military to risk their lives for this country. Even with the way they were treated, they still wanted to fight for the land they called home.
"The Vietnam War saw the highest proportion of blacks ever to serve in an American war. During the height of the U.S. involvement, 1965-69, blacks, who formed 11 percent of the American population, made up 12.6 percent of the soldiers in Vietnam" (http://www.english.illinois.edu/maps/poets/s_z/ste...). During all of these wars, people of color had little to no rights as American citizens. They were lucky to even hold the title of citizen. But, when their country needed them, they stood up. They fought for the place they called home.
Even today, black American soldiers are all over the world, fighting for this great country. 17.8 percent of the military is black. (http://www.statisticbrain.com/demographics-of-acti...). This is a large percentage, when one considers that only 13.3 percent of American citizens identify as African American alone, according to the 2015 census (https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/table/PST045215/...).Why are they fighting? They are fighting for the future. They are fighting, because they see what this country could be. They want to help make the vision a reality. They are not sitting down at home, complaining about their race being oppressed. By sitting during the national anthem, Colin Kaepernick and other NFL players not only disrespect our country, they disrespect all the men and women, white and black, who fought and still fight today for a better future. Don't sit becuase of the present. Stand to say, "thank you." Stand for the future.