Gather ’round kids, cop a knee

In a time where the United States seems to have enemies on every front; Hurricane Harvey, Hurricane Irma, Hurricane Maria, North Korea, and other various Asian and East Asian Countries… Our Fearless Leader is most concerned about copping a squat, bending a knee, and so on and so forth.

Mr. Trump is more intent on calling disrespect to a man (now men) who are peaceably and lawfully expressing a concern and care for a cause – than he is about helping all of the American Citizens in Puerto Rico who have just been demolished by 2 Category 5 Hurricanes.

Mr. President finds it more important to throw a tantrum and revoke a declined White House invitation, than he does to help restore drinkable water and electricity to this country’s citizens who are so desperately in need.

This loud mouth, Cheeto colored, wrinkled bag of air is more worried about perceived disrespect to a piece of material, than he is about the fact that he may have quite literally just kicked off a war with North Korea, on Twitter for God’s sake.

This ignorant, egotistical, hateful, lousy excuse for a human being is more involved in throwing dung (like the overgrown screech monkey that he is) at people for exercising their documented rights (as per the Declaration of Independence) – than he is about the fact that more than a war, he may very well be kicking off WWIII.

But I digress, let us talk about Mr. Kaepernick for a moment:

“I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses Black people and people of color. 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.”

Here, you have a Black Man who is using the platform offered to him by his success and fame, to do an honorable thing and try to spread awareness and maybe even make a change for people in our country.

This man is exercising his given rights as an American Citizen, to peaceably and lawfully express his concern for an issue that is near and dear to his heart. He’s standing up (no pun intended) for a cause that should be near and dear to all our hearts. No matter if you’re Black, White, Asian, Latino, Native, Indian, Filipino, Middle Eastern, or a combination of thereof – this should be a huge concern and a point of change for all of us.

“Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
“Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she
With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

– Emma Lazarus

This is what America is supposed to stand for. America is supposed to be a country where regardless of race, religion, creed, sexuality, or economic status – one might have freedom in the pursuit of happiness.

Is that what this country is? Are we one nation, under God, indivisible? Is there liberty and justice for all?

Don’t answer that, those of us without bags over our heads know the sad answer to this question.

The answer to this very question is why I myself do not participate in the Pledge of Allegiance not the flag salute. I stopped doing the Pledge of Allegiance when I was a kid, because I did not think that I had to stand up and say words that I didn’t understand (at the time) to show that I loved my country. As an adult, now understanding these words, I feel like they are completely hypocritical to the mindset and the social standing of this country. And I still don’t think that I need to mimic some words to a piece of fabric to show my Grandfathers, Uncles, Cousins, and Sister that I am ever grateful for their sacrifice and service to this nation.

The Pledge of Allegiance is an empty exercise derived of a regime-like mindset that most other countries find to be creepy and representative of Dictatorship. I feel no need to participate in this empty and meaningless act. Rather, I prefer to be a kind person to people in my community and to those I encounter. I choose to donate to causes supporting the troops, and my local community efforts. I choose to express to my family and friends how much I appreciate that the service they have given to the country allows me to refuse to salute the flag without fearing legal repercussions from my Government.

So I ask you this, why can I refuse to salute the flag or say the pledge of allegiance, and receive no negativity or hate from those around me? Why can religious bodies such as Jehovah’s Witnesses refuse to do either of these exercises, and yet do not get the public masses whipped up about it, and get hateful tweets from the Leader of the country?

Well. I’m not a Black Man. I’m not a Black Man who is bringing bringing to the forefront of people’s attention, the discrimination and injustice against minorities that runs amok in our Police and Judicial system. I am not a Black Man who is pointing out to people what they would rather ignore. I am not a Black Man who is making the guilty squirm in their chairs as they are forced to face that which they usually turn their heads from.

But most plainly and simply; it’s just because I am not a Black Man in the United States of America.

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