Sorry, you need to enable JavaScript to visit this website.

Kneeling has always signified supplication

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Dear Editor,

The controversy just won’t die. The sports reporters won’t let it die. The team owners won’t let it die. Even Donald Trump gets into the act regularly. The kneeling players of the NFL have become a staple of the news reporting cycle.

But has anyone really looked at the posture of those kneeling players? Has anyone considered what it means to kneel? For centuries — for eons — kneeling has been a sign of submission. People kneel before authority. People kneel in prayer. People kneel in supplication. It shows submission to a greater power. It shows respect.

It does not show defiance. While the one who kneels may disagree with that higher power he is not defying authority. He is submitting to it. Grudgingly perhaps, but submitting.

And what does the national anthem have to do with a football game? Nothing whatsoever, so far as I can see. Football is, after all, a game. Just a game. It has nothing to do with our nation’s security or welfare.

Prior to 1916 The Star Spangled Banner was just a piece of music. It had no official standing with any governmental body until President Wilson, by executive order, made it the official anthem of the military services. It did not become the official anthem for the entire country until 1931. So we existed as a nation for most of our history without it.

Those football players are not disrespecting the flag nor the national anthem. They kneel in supplication.

And they are being reviled by a thoughtless and arrogant public.

Sterling Rogers

San Marcos