Letters to the Editor

Kaepernick’s gesture misses the point

Colin Kaepernick totally misses the point. Our flag and national anthem are representations of our national ideals for our freedoms captured in our Declaration of Independence and Constitution which form the basis for the American way of life. Pursuit of these national ideals is a never-ending journey; the flag and anthem are not indications of achievement of those ideals.

Patriotic gestures are indications you support those national ideals and acknowledge the sacrifices that have been made to achieve and preserve the freedoms we have. Members of the armed forces take an oath to support and defend the constitution of the United States meaning they defend the ideals expressed in our founding documents that Americans pursue, but they don’t qualify that oath by saying “only if everyone behaves properly.”

Kaepernick is a very rich young man who has no identity or life outside of football. Sitting on the bench during the national anthem is openly declaring he doesn’t support the ideals for the American way of life. His childish demonstration is simply saying, “I don’t like it, and I’m going to sit here until somebody fixes it.” He has earned my contempt! Get off your ass and do something, Colin!

This is not about Kaepernick’s first amendment rights as a private citizen. Rather, it about his public behavior wearing the uniform as a representative of the NFL. The image-conscious NFL incorporates patriotism into game-opening ceremonies and honors Pat Tillman for his sacrifice. What image does Kaepernick portray for the NFL?

David Vail, O'Fallon