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Taking the Knee A Foolish Act or What?

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Taking the Knee A Foolish Act or What?

 

Elmore Richmond Jr.

SMSgt (Retired USAF – Retired in 1989, Superintendent, Social Actions Program, Los Angeles Air Force Base, CA)

 

America’s leadership has failed to address the problem of police brutality for many years. In fact, before President Barack Obama left office, I wrote him on December 12, 2016. Click on link to read the complete letter. Letter to President Obama, December 12, 2016, below is a quote from the letter.

 “…There is corruption within law enforcement throughout the country and there is a lack of trust.  Consequently, the conditions have become grave for both the police and the people.  As President, you have the responsibility to expose the severity of this problem and take corrective action now.

It is unfair to the People for you to fail to expose the true nature of this problem before you leave office.  In fact it is a dereliction of duty as President of the United States of America.   Moreover, it is unfair to the next administrative to inherit this dire and deathly state of corruption and a complete breakdown of law and order without a complete analysis and proposed corrective action.  I pray in the name of Jesus, that you will take action now.”

President Trump, like most Americans do not understand the gravity of the police mistreatment of African Americans in the United States and the failure of the justice system to hold the police accountable. On June 8, 2017, I wrote President Trump and explained to him the mess that President Obama had left him regarding police and community relationship and made recommendations on how to address this serious problem. Surely President Trump was wrong for calling these players “SOB's” who will not stand during the playing of the National Anthem. Of course the President of the United States would like all to stand with him with pride to help make America great again, in the true sense. Do you believe that President Trump knows the motivation for Colin Kaepernick’s decision to not stand in 2016 during the singing of the National Anthem? Do you really know?

The true reason that Kaepernick did not stand for the National Anthem did not receive any real airtime in 2016; the focus was on him not standing and the real message was lost from the very onset of his protest.   Moreover, the political system has failed and it did not begin with the election of President Trump. To pay respect to the flag and to stand up for the National Anthem requires more than standing up and putting your hands over your heart when the music is played. However, it requires devotion to the call to help ensure that America is a nation under God and it is a nation that works to ensure that there is liberty and justice for all of its citizens.

The election is over; however the anger is still a reality.   Today, it is unfortunate that we are paying some of our politicians millions of dollars to sit on the sidelines protesting instead of working to effect much needed change in health care, national security, rebuilding the infrastructure, working to ensure peace, working to improve police and community relationship, and repaying of our national debts, etc. Surely, there are many that have taken a knee, and we are paying them to do so as the nation drowns in debt, many have lost all of their earthly possession, and the aroma of war is in the air.

Yes, we would like all to stand up for America!   However, standing up for America requires action and sometimes personal scarifies. Thousands of our fellow-Americans are taking action now to help the victims of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria; surely this is the spirit that makes us proud to say, “I too, sing, America.”   Nevertheless, there are millions who fail to respect the Office of the President of the United States. President Trump has been fighting against a system that has clearly demonstrated that it was against him before he took the oath of Office.   Everyday when President Trump awakes he is faced with a flood of mockery that attacks every word, action, inaction, and gesture he had made or did not make. These attacks come from the media, reporters, talk show hosts, actors, politicians – both republicans and democrats, and people on the left from all walks of life. This is a daily drama for President Donald J. Trump, the President of the United States of America!

Moreover, some elected officials have refused to work with President Trump and some have expressed the resolve to bring his presidency to a quick end.   In addition, to these elected officials, prior to President Obama leaving office, he helped set the stage and shared his opinion regarding the fitness of the President Elect at home and when he went abroad. In spite of this, the public looks to President Trump to be a charming person, when there is clear evidence that there are many who are out to destroy his presidency. Surely, President Trump has work to do – his tongue at times is an unruly member of his body – prayer and the power of God will help him tame his tongue. However, the President must be informed to discover why people are taking a knee, why elected officials are turning their backs, and why the media continues to attack him! Many would like for the President to change, surely at times there would be a more preferred way for him to express his views. 

However, it is very important that his critics look at themselves in the mirror.  

Now let us take a look at reasons for taking a knee!

  • (1) We know that in 2016 Colin Kaepernick did not stand during the singing of the national anthem. Did you know that he has given 1 million dollars to organizations that he supports?   Do you know and does President Trump know Colin Kaepernick’s true message and his real concerns? In an interview in 2016, he said "The message is that we have a lot of issues in this country that we need to deal with,” and Kaepernick also clarified what he is trying to accomplish with his protest. He further explained, "We have a lot of people that are oppressed, we have a lot of people that aren't treated equally ... there are a lot of issues that need to be talked about, need to be brought to life, and we need to fix those things." Surely, this message has been lost. Surely, President Donald Trump and the people do not understand the true message and most Americans have never heard it up until now. Surely, I as a proud American support this cause! Here are some things that I would like you to consider:
  • (2) Can we also take a knee because the DA’s, State Prosecutors, and Attorney Generals failure to prosecute or indict police officers when the evidence is against them?
  • (3) Can we take a knee because the rights of parents have been taken away because of common core?
  • (4) Can we take a knee because we are a nation that is no longer under God and Christians are being persecuted because of their belief in God!
  • (5) Can we take a knee because many Politicians that the People elected have decided to sit on the sideline and refuse to work on the real problems that are truly impacting America!
  • (6) Are some taking a knee because Hilary Clinton was not elected President and President Trump will bring an end to some of the works of President Obama, the first Black President of the United States?
  • (7) Can we take a knee because 1 percent of the population owns more financial wealth then the bottom 80%?
  • (8) Are we taking a knee because of the unfair trade agreements and many jobs have been lost in America and the hirelings are oppressed in their wages?
  • (9) Are we taking a knee because the plight of the poor in America has not being adequately addressed to include the plight of Whites?
  • (10) Are we taking a knee because of our nations rush to shed innocent blood!
  • (11) Are we taking a knee because the veterans are not receiving timely health care?
  • (12)Are we taking a knee for the water problems in Flint Michigan?
  • (13)Are we taking a knee because there are some in Congress who refuse to work on the things that are in the best interest of the country because they refuse to work with the President?
  • (14)Are we taking a knee because the nation is divided and we know within our heart that it will and cannot continue to stand?
  • (15)Are we taking a knee because many do not believe in their hearts that Black Lives matter?
  • (16)Are we taking a knee because of the increased racial hatred and the lack of real resolve to address root causes to improve it?
  • (17)Are we taking a knee because the level of Black on Black crime continues to rise and the leadership lacks the vision and resolve to fix it?
  • (18)Are there some taking a knee because they do not agree with the way President Trump expresses himself?
  • (19)Are we taking a knee because we have used our military might against other nations without provocation?
  • (20)Are we taking a knee because of the Supreme Court’s Ruling on same-sex marriage – a ruling that defiles the Holy Institution of Marriage?
  • (21)Are we taking a knee because a man can use the same restroom as a woman or girl?
  • (22)Are you taking a knee because America is engaging in the things that God hates:
    1. A Proud look!
    2. A Lying Tongue
    3. Hands That Shed Innocent Blood
    4. A Heart That Deviseth Wicked Imaginations
    5. Feet that Be Swift In Running to Mischief
    6. A False Witness that Speaketh Lies
    7. He that Soweth Discord Among Brethren

Add what you would protest against. Is there anyone left standing?   Oh I am not just talking about standing with our hands on our hearts when the National Anthem is being sung, however I am taking about working to address the things that Colin Kaepernick took a knee for.   We must do more than just repeat his concerns, however we must work to resolve these concerns. It must be noted that Kaepernick not only took a knee, but he also used his money to help support the cause. However, the message has been lost and has not been heard, the nation has taken very little action to address these real concerns.

Everyday, I fall on my knees and pray for this nation. However, I will always stand and fight for what is right. I will stand and fight because I believe that if we learn the precepts of God and learn to fear God and discover our sins and repent – God will heal this land. I have been charged to stand and lift up my voice like a trumpet. We have work to do in America – A nation divided against itself will not stand!   Republicans and Democrats in the House and Senate must work together and address the things that are in the best interest of the nation. Surely, this is a challenge for them because there are some in politics for their own political livelihood.

I pray that we will begin to work and address the things that Colin Kaepernick took a knee for and many other concerns of the People. Yes, President Trump was wrong for using derogatory terms in describing these men because they have the right to protest and America has much work to do to address real concerns. Now if the truth is told – there are millions in America that agree with the comments of President Trump when he made these derogatory comments regarding the players who refused to stand.   This is a sad commentary, however it is true.

Now the focus is on President Trump and the National Football League not the concerns of Kaepernick. Again, if we are not careful we will miss a real opportunity to stand up for America and address these very serious concerns that first brought Kaepernick to his knee. In the words of Kaepernick: "We have a lot of people that are oppressed, we have a lot of people that aren't treated equally ... there are a lot of issues that need to be talked about, need to be brought to life, and we need to fix those things." Today, we must realize that the focus must not be on the derogatory comments that were made by President Trump, moreover the focus must not be on whether players are standing or taking the knee. However, the prudent would realize that we must turn our attention to what has been lost, the concerns that were first raised by Kaepernick.  Here is a link to a video that gives a comprehensive overview and offers recommendations.   America, America wake up!

In the words of Langston Hughes, I Too Sing, America!