Three thoughts I never imagined I’d ponder on a Monday in September:
1. The NFL and it’s players are under attack, not by worried mothers, not by CTE or brain damage and not by a league-wide plague of herpes….but from our own President of the United States.
“Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a bitch off the field right now, out, he’s fired. He’s fired,'” Trump said. “You know, some owner is going to do that. He’s going to say, ‘That guy that disrespects our flag, he’s fired.’ And that owner, they don’t know it [but] they’ll be the most popular person in this country.”
2. According to near-sighted people, kneeling is the most disrespectful act a person can demonstrate towards the American flag.
“The flag should never be used as wearing apparel, bedding, or drapery. It should never be festooned, drawn back, nor up, in folds, but always allowed to fall free.”
“The flag should never be carried flat or horizontally, but always aloft and free.”
“It should not be embroidered on such articles as cushions or handkerchiefs and the like, printed or otherwise impressed on paper napkins or boxes or anything that is designed for temporary use and discard.”
“The flag should never be used for advertising purposes in any manner whatsoever.”
“No part of the flag should ever be used as a costume or athletic uniform. However, a flag patch may be affixed to the uniform of military personnel, firemen, policemen, and members of patriotic organizations.”
3. The country is being divided and bred to harbor anger towards fellow Americans by our own President.
The main question I have at this point, is how did we get here? How did we go from Colin Kaepernick kneeling to protest the injustice and killing of African American citizens due to a systematic problem with the police department, to Donald Trump calling NFL players “sons of bitches” and creating a false-narrative about patriotism?
The NFL timeline since Colin Kaepernick’s protest, a post-Kaepernick era:
- Aug 14, 2016- Colin Kaepernick sits for the national anthem…..and no one noticed.
- Aug 20th, 2016- Colin again sits, and again, no one noticed.
- Aug 26th, 2016- Colin sits and this time he is met with a monsoon of hatred unseen against an athlete in recent memory. Even the future President (Trump) of the United States took shots at him while on the campaign trail. Colin went on to explain his protest had NOTHING to with the military.
- Aug 30th, 2016 Nate Boyer, a former Army Green Beret turned NFL long snapper, penned an open letter to Colin in the Army Times. In it he expressed how Colin’s actions affected him.
-Excerpt from the letter:“I’m not judging you for standing up for what you believe in. It’s your inalienable right. What you are doing takes a lot of courage, and I’d be lying if I said I knew what it was like to walk around in your shoes. I’ve never had to deal with prejudice because of the color of my skin, and for me to say I can relate to what you’ve gone through is as ignorant as someone who’s never been in a combat zone telling me they understand what it’s like to go to war.Even though my initial reaction to your protest was one of anger, I’m trying to listen to what you’re saying and why you’re doing it.There are already plenty people fighting fire with fire, and it’s just not helping anyone or anything. So I’m just going to keep listening, with an open mind.I look forward to the day you’re inspired to once again stand during our national anthem. I’ll be standing right there next to you. Keep on trying … De Oppresso Liber.”
- Great leaders remain positive even when under pressure and scrutiny
- Great leaders exhibit confidence but not arrogance or hubris
- Great leaders have a sense of humor but also know when to be serious
- Great leaders embrace failure and use it as a tool for learning and moving forward Great leaders manage setbacks and manage emotions
- Great leaders listen intently to the opposition and respond articulately
- Great leaders inspire and motivate
- Great leaders take responsibility and never place blame
- Great leaders make decisions based on experience and lessons learned
- Great leaders lead by example and commit to doing what’s in the best interest of the group
Who will stand and lead?