There's a women's college basketball player up in New York who's taken to turning partly away from the flag during the anthem before games. And she's been catching shit for "disrespecting" veterans and the sacrifices they've made protecting our liberties.
Will you people all please fuck off? Just because a person says they think our government and our country is following the wrong course does not mean what you fought for, or what your friends or family members died for, is meaningless. It doesn't mean they disrespect you or anyone else currently serving. It surely doesn't mean they don't care about loss of life. It simply means what it says, that they feel what's being done right now under the auspices of that flag is wrong.
Yes, I understand that blind obidience is expected of serving military personnel. I understand that that system doesn't work without it. But this is a civilian. She's entitled to your opinion. You're entitled to yours. Express it, but stay the fuck out of her face while you do it.
"You don't matter", my ass. Everybody matters. Sports Illustrated's Phil Taylor has it exactly right:
Every time the national anthem is played at a game, it's a political statement. Every franchise that flies the flag in its arena or stadium is making a political statement. Every athlete who stands respectfully at attention during The Star-Spangled Banner is making a political statement. If those statements are appropriate and acceptable -- and the view here is that they are -- then it's hypocritical to suggest that Smith is somehow stepping over the line by expressing opposing thoughts.
Nothing says we must play the national anthem before a game, or hang a flag in a gym, or fly it over a field. We choose to do this by custom, we may codify it in the rules of a sport sanctioning organization, but there is no law anywhere that requires it. We may choose, as a larger body of people, to make that political statement. And by the same token, anyone has the right to choose not to participate.