It is no surprise that, after being called “SOBs” by their own president, more than 100 NFL players chose to kneel, sit or link arms in solidarity during the national anthem over the course of several games.

Many say these protests, while peaceful, are disrespectful toward the men and women who fought for the very flag the players refuse to put their hands over their hearts for. However, those same military personnel fought in the name of America so each citizen (including football players) could have freedom of speech. Our own Constitution declares in the First Amendment that Americans have the right “to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

If anyone is being disrespectful towards our fallen military members, it is the people who are criticizing the players for standing up for their rights. To say the players shouldn’t and can’t petition is to say our soldiers made the ultimate sacrifice for nothing.

The end-all is the NFL players have the right to protest, especially considering the minority players are not being represented or respected by their government.

After all, how can they respect a flag that doesn’t respect them?

Katie Hennessy


New Orleans