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Can we fire it up in here a bit???

Supposedly there currently is a national stir over some quarterback from some pro football team on the West Coast who refused to stand for the National Anthem. Was he correct? Exercising his rights? Disrespectful? Or, just plain idiotic? I am not going to comment on him or his actions. But, I will share my thoughts on the flag and leave it to others to draw their own conclusions.

From the website, www.usa.gov/flag, "The Flag of the United States of America is a symbol of freedom and liberty to which Americans pledge their allegiance by standing at attention, facing the flag with the right hand over the heart, and reciting: "I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all." The flag consists of 13 alternating red and white stripes that represent the 13 original colonies, and 50 white stars on a blue field, with each star representing a state. The colors on the flag represent: • Red: valor and bravery • White: purity and innocence • Blue: vigilance, perseverance, and justice."

I realize the United States has its share of weighty troubles and I am not going to diminish or make light of them. The struggle of people groups within these borders is very real and painful.

We are also living in a time full of distraction, distrust, disregard, and division. Our beautiful "melting pot" has morphed into a polarized and disrupted state. Are we just charred remains? Or, is the pot only now starting to boil over and spill? The beauty of our flag, or any flag for that matter, is that it serves as a rallying point. It is a rendering of a set of ideals which a group of people hold deep in their hearts. The flag is a point of unification.

I may disagree with your ideas and politics, or with the way in which you live your life, but I see others here in these borders, as my fellow Americans and so, whether I like you as a person or not is immaterial. Under this flag and only this flag, because we agree on so little else, are we sharing in something.

At the end of Mel Gibson's movie, Apocalypto, there is a quote given as the European explorers sail up to the shores of the Central American lands for the first time...these lands in which jungle communities are hunted by the stronger civilizations for human sacrifice at the temples. It reads, "A great civilization is not conquered from without until it has destroyed itself from within." (W. Durant).

If the American flag is one of the few remaining emblems of commonly-held ideals (namely freedom) we possess as a nation, then does it make sense to trample it? Burn it? Not stand up for it? Radical groups the world over burn, rip, and trample the American flag. These same groups cut off peoples' heads and rape babies. Are we really going to align our behaviors with those crowds?

If more people are "okay" with negative actions toward one of our national symbols, then what do we have left? We have removed what were common thoughts, beliefs, and behaviors in favor of a "more free" state, but then people are permitted and even extolled for hating the very physical thing that represents these freedoms in the first place.

After 9/11, the one single unifying aspect we shared as a country, whether we lived in the desert, the bayous, the mountains, the plains, or the coasts was a rectangle colored with red, white, and blue.

You may have voted for the "other guy" at the polls, but when we saw one another's car magnet flags, or porch flags, we knew we shared a kindred bond with others, with other Americans, who DO hail from all over the globe and who came here, some sadly under force and some by choice to begin life and to begin what IS a great American adventure.

The songs goes, "...the Flag still stands for freedom and they can't take that away..." Oh, but they can and they will. If we let them. If we despise the emblems of our freedom, we shall fall from within first and then those who want to trample more than our flag will have that opportunity. We will have handed it to them.

"...By the dawn's early light!" Francis Scott Key was excited to see that the flag remained during the night. His rally point and place of unity still stood. We are in the night as a nation right now, do we tear down our most visible and important reminder of who we are?

Re: Can we fire it up in here a bit???

  • This was once a fairly lively board!  I'm bummed there seems to have been an exodus.  I'm blaming The Nest for all their weirdo login problems awhile back.

    I live in the United States (born and bred), but I suspect my statements are true for any citizen of any country.  A country's flag is a key and important symbol of that country.  Most countries also have an anthem, also a key and important symbol.  I love my country very much, so those are important and meaningful elements to me.  I also respect other country's flags/anthems.  If another country's anthem is playing, I would stand in respect (though not allegiance) for it.

    One of the core beliefs the U.S. is built on is freedom.  On a government level, I don't think it should be illegal to protest against the U.S., up to and including burning the flag.  Because that would go against the very thing...freedom...that makes our country so great.  I realize, in practice, that unfortunately freedom does not exist for everyone...even here...equally.  and that is certainly one of our failings and one of the social issues that need to be worked on.

    But here's the thing.  There is a lot of flak right now because Kaepernick, the QB you refer to, refused to stand for the anthem.  A lot of people spouting off against the naysayers that "he's following his beliefs" and he "shouldn't be judged/should be respected" for that.

    Yes, he absolutely has the right to do what he believes in.  He wasn't arrested, of course, because that isn't illegal.  I don't even think he was punished by the NFL or 49ers (team he plays for).  But does a lot of America, myself included, think he's a scumbag for being disrespectful to his country?  YEAH.  And do we have the right to think that and voice those opinions also.  YEAH.  And if I owned or had sway in a company that used him for endorsements, would I drop him like the hottest potato ever?  YEAH.

    And on his subject of societal wrongs towards people, specifically black people.  Half of our country is also female.  I sure don't seem to remember him refusing to play for the NFL, or anything like that, when it came out that this organization tried to bring about a MAJOR cover-up when one of their players knocked his fiancée out cold in a public elevator.

    Where is his outrage that a larger percentage of both college and pro football players beat their wives/girlfriends and rape women as opposed to the general male population?  You know, the VERY SPORT he plays.  Or that Superbowl Sunday has the largest incidence of domestic violence than any other day of the year.

    I'm not even saying he needed to do any of those things.  Or that he can't choose whatever cause he prefers.  But if he wants to use his national platform to right societal wrongs, I can't help but side-eye his choice when similar wrongs are happening to women, in his own backyard.  Oooohhhh, but then attacking the NFL because it is closer to home, that could actually affect his career.

    MommyLiberty5013
  • I've been to a lot of football games as a former marching band member. It always has seemed to me to be a weird time to express ones patriotism. But the quarterback is using his first amendment right to express his anger and there's very little that is more American than that. I respect him for standing up or sitting down in this case for what he believes. If he starts whining about the consequences of his actions, that respect will disappear. Now not standing up to show respect for the troops, that's a whole different issue. 
  • stillanestiestillanestie
    10 Comments
    member
    edited September 2016
    We polarized this country when we did not make English the primary official language.

    We permitted this "dial one for Spanish" bullshit.

    There are also other groups coming into this country who refuse to learn English.

    How many ways are we going to divide the pie?

    How many groups are we going to cater to?

    How many more job ads are there going to be that say "must speak Arabic" or "must speak Korean" or "must speak Spanish" or "Must speak Hindi" or Urdu or wow, any language you can name??? My local want ads are full of this nonsense. If you are a businessperson of any kind, you usually speak English, too! We're supposed to be a 'global economy" so there is no need for this "must speak" edict. 

    A house divided cannot stand.

    How many more bilingual classrooms are we going to supply, and pay a teacher who speaks that language? How many more state and county workers are we going to "have" to hire to serve a group whose primary language is Hindi or Urdu or Arabic or Spanish or Creole...or whatever the language du jour is? How many more languages do we add to the growing list that is getting longer?

    A house divided cannot stand.

    How many more bilingual, trilingual (yes, trilingual -- they are on just about every label: Spanish, English and French) and quadlingual signage in public places are we going to post? This will eventually be reflected on the consumer or the little guy: these multilingual notificantions are NOT for free.

    A house divided cannot stand. 

    How many businesses or restaurants or establishments that deal with the public are going to hire personnel who speak only "that language"???

    A house divided cannot stand. In this area, try to find somebody who can fluently speak English, if you go into a store or restaurant -- it is impossible. It's also poor customer service.

    A house divided cannot stand. 

    I see many companies and businesses in my area with signage on them that is in Korean or Japanese or Hebrew or Hindi. This is permissible? Since when?


    There are also groups that will not assimilate or "belong" to their new country. They are an entity unto themselves. If you move to this country, you are an American. You observe our holidays, you observe our traditions, you speak our language. This is now your country, the same as it would be my new country if I became a permanent resident of Germany, France, Portugal or any other country you can name.

    If learning English was good enough for my Russian grandparents and Polish grandparents, it is good enough for the rest of you. Why are you all an exception? Because we permitted it.

    Everybody forgot Kaepernick is using his First Amendment rights. I am sick of the shit I see on FB -- people calling him a "piece of shit" and "move the %$&$&#$ out of this country if you don't like it here" and worse.

    Such hate for a guy nobody heard of, until a bit over a week ago. I can picture the foam running out of the mouths of these jackals when they post their vitrol.

    And yes, I blame the internet for the hate and the division. it is now Okay to hate *everyone* and say what the heck you wish. Very sad.

    This same bunch vitriolic and divisive bunch  is calling for him to be booted from the team and yeah, from the NFL altogether. He has not violated a rule of any kind, either national or NFL.

    (Don Imus was not fired that time in 2007 when he made that comment. So Kaepernick is not going anywhere)

    What also bothers me: all the false information that is being circulated. Right away they are tying Islam into it. And also tying his "Muslim girlfriend" into it.

    No idea what this guy's dating status is. Where did they get this info?

    This nonsense that is untrue and being circulated on social media is further dividing us. Factor in that the information is NOT factual! That's where the real danger lies.

    People are stupid --- and will believe anything you tell them. That's the real danger indeed.:(

    The Jehovah's Witness religion forbids their followers from saluting the flag and under this heading, I am guesing they are also forbidden to partake in singing the National Anthem. 

    How is this acceptable? Because your founder said no? Bullshit. 

    The JHs won't salute our flag or sing the National Anthem -- and I also imagine they  are forbidden to partake in other fine musical standards that are in tribute to our country -- but you can buy up a piece of our American land and build a honking huge "world headquarters" on it in Waldwick, NY....

    And all of it tax free.     

    How is it permissible to give your followers/members carte blanche not to salute a flag/have fealty for whatever nation they are living in??? This is an American-born religion. To me, your religion and your sense of nationalism are two distinct entities.
  • We polarized this country when we did not make English the primary official language.

    We permitted this "dial one for Spanish" bullshit.

    There are also other groups coming into this country who refuse to learn English.

    How many ways are we going to divide the pie?

    How many groups are we going to cater to?

    How many more job ads are there going to be that say "must speak Arabic" or "must speak Korean" or "must speak Spanish" or "Must speak Hindi" or Urdu or wow, any language you can name??? My local want ads are full of this nonsense. If you are a businessperson of any kind, you usually speak English, too! We're supposed to be a 'global economy" so there is no need for this "must speak" edict. 

    A house divided cannot stand.

    How many more bilingual classrooms are we going to supply, and pay a teacher who speaks that language? How many more state and county workers are we going to "have" to hire to serve a group whose primary language is Hindi or Urdu or Arabic or Spanish or Creole...or whatever the language du jour is? How many more languages do we add to the growing list that is getting longer?

    A house divided cannot stand.

    How many more bilingual, trilingual (yes, trilingual -- they are on just about every label: Spanish, English and French) and quadlingual signage in public places are we going to post? This will eventually be reflected on the consumer or the little guy: these multilingual notificantions are NOT for free.

    A house divided cannot stand. 

    How many businesses or restaurants or establishments that deal with the public are going to hire personnel who speak only "that language"???

    A house divided cannot stand. In this area, try to find somebody who can fluently speak English, if you go into a store or restaurant -- it is impossible. It's also poor customer service.

    A house divided cannot stand. 

    I see many companies and businesses in my area with signage on them that is in Korean or Japanese or Hebrew or Hindi. This is permissible? Since when?


    There are also groups that will not assimilate or "belong" to their new country. They are an entity unto themselves. If you move to this country, you are an American. You observe our holidays, you observe our traditions, you speak our language. This is now your country, the same as it would be my new country if I became a permanent resident of Germany, France, Portugal or any other country you can name.

    If learning English was good enough for my Russian grandparents and Polish grandparents, it is good enough for the rest of you. Why are you all an exception? Because we permitted it.

    Everybody forgot Kaepernick is using his First Amendment rights. I am sick of the shit I see on FB -- people calling him a "piece of shit" and "move the %$&$&#$ out of this country if you don't like it here" and worse.

    Such hate for a guy nobody heard of, until a bit over a week ago. I can picture the foam running out of the mouths of these jackals when they post their vitrol.

    And yes, I blame the internet for the hate and the division. it is now Okay to hate *everyone* and say what the heck you wish. Very sad.

    This same bunch vitriolic and divisive bunch  is calling for him to be booted from the team and yeah, from the NFL altogether. He has not violated a rule of any kind, either national or NFL.

    (Don Imus was not fired that time in 2007 when he made that comment. So Kaepernick is not going anywhere)

    What also bothers me: all the false information that is being circulated. Right away they are tying Islam into it. And also tying his "Muslim girlfriend" into it.

    No idea what this guy's dating status is. Where did they get this info?

    This nonsense that is untrue and being circulated on social media is further dividing us. Factor in that the information is NOT factual! That's where the real danger lies.

    People are stupid --- and will believe anything you tell them. That's the real danger indeed.:(

    The Jehovah's Witness religion forbids their followers from saluting the flag and under this heading, I am guesing they are also forbidden to partake in singing the National Anthem. 

    How is this acceptable? Because your founder said no? Bullshit. 

    The JHs won't salute our flag or sing the National Anthem -- and I also imagine they  are forbidden to partake in other fine musical standards that are in tribute to our country -- but you can buy up a piece of our American land and build a honking huge "world headquarters" on it in Waldwick, NY....

    And all of it tax free.     

    How is it permissible to give your followers/members carte blanche not to salute a flag/have fealty for whatever nation they are living in??? This is an American-born religion. To me, your religion and your sense of nationalism are two distinct entities.

    I agree and disagree with some of the things you wrote.  Businesses absolutely have the right to put their advertising and owners can speak in whatever language they would like.  However, they could potentially get into hot water if they won't hire employees who don't speak X languages.  If someone wanted to make an issue of it, the business owner would need to prove that it is a CORE component of the job to speak X language.  And that goes for English also.  However, if most of their clientele speak X language, it arguably would not be hard for them to prove the core component aspect.

    With that said, English is the primary language spoken in this country.  Perhaps not in certain very specific areas, but generally it is.  As such, I think people who make the U.S. their home should learn how to speak English and it irritates me when they don't.  Maybe not perfect or fluently, but well enough to communicate basic and intermediate pieces of information.  If I moved to a foreign country, that is exactly what I would do.  Even if I just VISIT a foreign country, the onus is on me to communicate my needs in their language.

    To the first bolded, I just wanted to clarify on that.  He might be unknown to people who don't follow the NFL at all or very little.  However, for anyone who does...which is a good number of folks in this country...he has been very well known, long before this incident.  He is the first string QB for a major NFL team and has been for a number of years.

    To the second bolded.  I think he's a jerk and side-eye him for what he did, but I totally agree with that comment.  What he did was freedom of speech and not illegal.  It's possible there are rules in the NFL/49ers that he violated.  I don't know one way or the other.  But I don't expect him to be booted from either nor do I "call for it".  The NFL and the 49ers are private organizations.  They can choose to make an issue of it or not.  And, even though I don't personally like his actions, I don't think they should anyway.  Exercising freedom of speech, to me, is not so egregious he should lose his job over it.

    In fact, if I am remembering correctly, the incident I referred to in my first post...the player who beat his fiancée into unconsciousness...he wasn't kicked out of the NFL either.  He was just banned from playing a few games.  To me, that incident is 100X worse...and an actual crime.


  • smerka said:
    I've been to a lot of football games as a former marching band member. It always has seemed to me to be a weird time to express ones patriotism. But the quarterback is using his first amendment right to express his anger and there's very little that is more American than that. I respect him for standing up or sitting down in this case for what he believes. If he starts whining about the consequences of his actions, that respect will disappear. Now not standing up to show respect for the troops, that's a whole different issue. 
    I agree with you.  I really don't care what he chooses to do.  I think he just did it for media attention. that's just my opinion though.  I'm starting to get annoyed by all the gifs and what not on FB which goes towards anything major that happens in our country.  I wish there was a way to not see all that stuff.
  • Supposed to be the primary language...but it is not the official -- as in law of the land -- language.

    The signs I see are in that language only.

    Suppose the fire department needs to get in there, if there is an emergency? Something potentially dangerous could be within; you don't know what kind of company is in operation because the signs are not in English. Maybe they have flammable liquids -- who knows? Are you going to know that, if the signage isn't in English? It would tell you straightaway what kind of business it is.   
  • That's just not true. There are so many stores that you'd have now idea what they do just based on their sign. The first thing that comes to mind? HR Block. They don't sell blocks there. I'm sure fire departments have listings of what different businesses do - they usually have to get an occupancy permit from the FD. And I would guess they also try to hire bilingual firemen for those areas. 
    MommyLiberty5013
  • We live in a capitalist society, if you don't like that a business does not have an English sign, don't shop there. That's your right. But the business owner has the right to have whatever sign he wants and cater to whatever clientele he wants. To put it another way, I strongly dislike Hobby Lobby's position on birth control and that they are closed on Sunday's (when I often shop). So I don't spend my money there. But I also don't think my opinion should prevent them from running their business the way they want to. 
    als1982labroMommyLiberty5013
  • Closed on Sundays in my area is equal to retail suicide. That's still one of the biggest days to shop!

    They should have located their store in a county where we still have blue laws. Closed on Sundays; much more suitable for HL's corporate philosophy. 
  • Now it seems that *everyone* is kneeling, for any and every reason -- and an NFL team already found a way to nip the problem in the bud:

    Play the National Anthem before the teams are introduced and before they come out onto the field. 
  • Now it seems that *everyone* is kneeling, for any and every reason -- and an NFL team already found a way to nip the problem in the bud:

    Play the National Anthem before the teams are introduced and before they come out onto the field. 


    I noticed that also.

    I was also interested to see last night that the 49ers would not allow Kaepernick to play if he did not stand for the Anthem.  He did not and they used their 2nd string QB for the game.  At least I'm assuming that is what happened for the whole game, lol.  It was on WAY too late for me and I went to bed after the 1st Quarter.

    MommyLiberty5013
  • It's now starting in other professional sports, in college sports and on the high school level.

    So it's kneel for any ole reason. This a copy cat thing now or what is it?

    There are 3 other seasons ahead of us for sports, and baseball will be wrapping it up soon.

    The kneeling fad will be over and something else is going to take its place -- what it will be, no idea.

    I think the best way to handle this is to not give it press at all. it will stop then, most likely. 

  • smerka said:
    That's just not true. There are so many stores that you'd have now idea what they do just based on their sign. The first thing that comes to mind? HR Block. They don't sell blocks there. I'm sure fire departments have listings of what different businesses do - they usually have to get an occupancy permit from the FD. And I would guess they also try to hire bilingual firemen for those areas. 

    I agree. The fire marshal of the town or city sets the occupancy limits. Businesses that serve certain things have to follow safety and health codes. Plus, to have a business license, the business has to divulge what they are doing (of course, there could always be fronts to hide illegal activities).
  • We polarized this country when we did not make English the primary official language.

    We permitted this "dial one for Spanish" bullshit.

    There are also other groups coming into this country who refuse to learn English.

    How many ways are we going to divide the pie?

    How many groups are we going to cater to?

    How many more job ads are there going to be that say "must speak Arabic" or "must speak Korean" or "must speak Spanish" or "Must speak Hindi" or Urdu or wow, any language you can name??? My local want ads are full of this nonsense. If you are a businessperson of any kind, you usually speak English, too! We're supposed to be a 'global economy" so there is no need for this "must speak" edict. 

    A house divided cannot stand.

    How many more bilingual classrooms are we going to supply, and pay a teacher who speaks that language? How many more state and county workers are we going to "have" to hire to serve a group whose primary language is Hindi or Urdu or Arabic or Spanish or Creole...or whatever the language du jour is? How many more languages do we add to the growing list that is getting longer?

    A house divided cannot stand.

    How many more bilingual, trilingual (yes, trilingual -- they are on just about every label: Spanish, English and French) and quadlingual signage in public places are we going to post? This will eventually be reflected on the consumer or the little guy: these multilingual notificantions are NOT for free.

    A house divided cannot stand. 

    How many businesses or restaurants or establishments that deal with the public are going to hire personnel who speak only "that language"???

    A house divided cannot stand. In this area, try to find somebody who can fluently speak English, if you go into a store or restaurant -- it is impossible. It's also poor customer service.

    A house divided cannot stand. 

    I see many companies and businesses in my area with signage on them that is in Korean or Japanese or Hebrew or Hindi. This is permissible? Since when?


    There are also groups that will not assimilate or "belong" to their new country. They are an entity unto themselves. If you move to this country, you are an American. You observe our holidays, you observe our traditions, you speak our language. This is now your country, the same as it would be my new country if I became a permanent resident of Germany, France, Portugal or any other country you can name.

    If learning English was good enough for my Russian grandparents and Polish grandparents, it is good enough for the rest of you. Why are you all an exception? Because we permitted it.

    Everybody forgot Kaepernick is using his First Amendment rights. I am sick of the shit I see on FB -- people calling him a "piece of shit" and "move the %$&$&#$ out of this country if you don't like it here" and worse.

    Such hate for a guy nobody heard of, until a bit over a week ago. I can picture the foam running out of the mouths of these jackals when they post their vitrol.

    And yes, I blame the internet for the hate and the division. it is now Okay to hate *everyone* and say what the heck you wish. Very sad.

    This same bunch vitriolic and divisive bunch  is calling for him to be booted from the team and yeah, from the NFL altogether. He has not violated a rule of any kind, either national or NFL.

    (Don Imus was not fired that time in 2007 when he made that comment. So Kaepernick is not going anywhere)

    What also bothers me: all the false information that is being circulated. Right away they are tying Islam into it. And also tying his "Muslim girlfriend" into it.

    No idea what this guy's dating status is. Where did they get this info?

    This nonsense that is untrue and being circulated on social media is further dividing us. Factor in that the information is NOT factual! That's where the real danger lies.

    People are stupid --- and will believe anything you tell them. That's the real danger indeed.:(

    The Jehovah's Witness religion forbids their followers from saluting the flag and under this heading, I am guesing they are also forbidden to partake in singing the National Anthem. 

    How is this acceptable? Because your founder said no? Bullshit. 

    The JHs won't salute our flag or sing the National Anthem -- and I also imagine they  are forbidden to partake in other fine musical standards that are in tribute to our country -- but you can buy up a piece of our American land and build a honking huge "world headquarters" on it in Waldwick, NY....

    And all of it tax free.     

    How is it permissible to give your followers/members carte blanche not to salute a flag/have fealty for whatever nation they are living in??? This is an American-born religion. To me, your religion and your sense of nationalism are two distinct entities.

    I am a bit confused. Can you clarify for me?

    At first you go on about English and people moving here not speaking it and "expecting" others to cater to their language of choice. You made many points to demonstrate that this is a bad choice - calling it "a house divided," etc..

    BUT then, you railed against businesses who CHOOSE, as private businesses, and also school districts, to cater to these demographics who don't speak English as their primary language.

    Then you make statements that the 49ers player (can't recall how to spell his name and too lazy to look it up), is within his 1st Amendment rights to do what he wants in regards to the standing or kneeling or whatever for the National Anthem.

    So, the NFL QB has rights to do what he wants, but the business owners and private companies don't? It seems like you want to be inclusive of everybody's right to do something or other for the National Anthem and free speech, but you won't give free speech rights or at least the right to speak as people most feel comfortable, to all people even if they don't speak English?

    Then, you dislike the religious groups who do not support making pledges, oaths, or showing allegiance to any symbol or thing. You specifically mentioned the JWs. Why don't they have rights to NOT participate, but Mr. fancy shmants 49ers QB does?

    I am having hard time making sense of this. Care to enlighten me?
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