Kansas City Chiefs: Marcus Peters Takes A Stand

Kansas City Chiefs cornerback Marcus Peters. Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports
Kansas City Chiefs cornerback Marcus Peters. Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports /
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Kansas City Chiefs
Kansas City Chiefs. Mandatory Credit: John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports /

Inconvenient Truths

The Kansas City Chiefs, like all professional sports teams, make a big production of the National Anthem.  That, of course, puts both our anthem and flag as the center of attention for the audience.  Teams arrange for displays by military assets, bring out gigantic flags, and hire the best talent they can to sing the anthem.  For many it’s a great display of patriotism.  For others, it is an opportunity to make a statement.  Ultimately, you can poke holes in the claims from both sides.  It’s not particularly difficult either.  One just needs to look.

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First, understand that the poem the National Anthem is taken from does hold racist undertones.  Undeniably so.  However, let’s not pretend that this was some kind of common knowledge.  Almost nobody even knew there was a third verse.  It is about a 99.999% certainty that you have NEVER sung that third verse.  We listen for 90 seconds to the first verse and move on.

Next is that the American flag has flown during some horrific parts of the nation’s history.  Slavery, the Trail of Tears (and other actions against Native Americans), Japanese-American internment, and other events.  It has also flown over independence from a tyrannical government, the signing of the Bill of Rights, the passage of the Civil Rights Act, the defeat of Hitler and other major moments.

Finally, there are the truths about these protests.  While the intent is to bring attention to a cause, can we really say that has been the result?  Has the national media picked up the conversation, or have they just put the cameras on for better ratings?  Let’s face it, even this article I am writing now isn’t really touching on the issues.