"...shaming someone for not standing for the national anthem is a lot like shaming non-Christians for not celebrating Christmas - ignorant and ridiculous."
It's funny, we'll see people getting criticized for wearing a certain type of religious clothing or worshiping in a way that we don't, and we'll go up in arms. We won't hesitate to go to bat for their rights to worship who and how they please.
So, then, my fellow Americans - why is it that that same passion for human rights is not being extended toward Colin Kaepernick?
As someone who made the choice in the fifth grade to stop standing for the pledge of allegiance, I can 100% relate to, identify, respect and understand Kaepernick's stance. Not standing up for the national anthem does not make him - or anyone else who makes that choice - anti-America (or Americans). And shaming someone for not standing for the national anthem is a lot like shaming non-Christians for not celebrating Christmas - ignorant and ridiculous.
Also, given Kaepernick's stated reasoning for not standing, is it really that hard to understand where he is coming from? One of the most famous lines from the national anthem, "O'er the land of the free," doesn't always seem to hold true.
Personally, as a black woman, I don't always feel all that free knowing that there have been so many innocent black people have been murdered at the hands of the police. I don't always feel all that free knowing that, in this upcoming election, I have to choose between bad and worse for my next president (you can determine who is who for yourself).
We need to admit it: America has a lot of work to do, and I completely stand (or, rather, sit) behind someone who is willing to acknowledge it, instead of turn a blind eye to it.
Oh, and by the way, there is nothing disrespectful about choosing not to conform to an act of worship for a national emblem! So, let's cut the self-righteousness.