Protests And Other Things.

There’s a difference between groups of people protesting and groups of people vandalizing things in the name of a protest.

We have seen too much vandalizing in the name of a cause recently.

The problem is that those who vandalize have their actions associated with the message peaceful protestors are trying to get out. It detracts greatly from what may be a legitimate concern by people.

Frankly, we have been proud of the actions of protesters here in Brevard County. (We are not talking about the message, but their actions in getting that message out.) We are unaware of any violence associated with their actions. At the same time, the message they want to convey is being heard. A good example is Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey acceding to protestors that he release the video of the death of Gregory Edwards while in custody of the Brevard County Sheriff’s Office. If not release it, at least show the video of the incident to Edwards’ widow, which is what appears will happen.

To bring that about, blogs, newspapers, and protestors have been getting the word out that Edwards’ widow Kathleen should see the video. Excuse after excuse was thrown up by Ivey and as those excuses and parsing of statements continued to reflect badly on him, Ivey agreed to show the video to Kathleen Edwards which is something that should have happened a long time ago.

That was accomplished without a single fire being set, without police being attacked, without stores being looted. The message was not overshadowed by any violence.

There is a long running meme out there about what is called “the Florida Man.” This is usually associated with the stupid things some people in Florida do.

Yet here, in Brevard County, Florida, we aren’t burning down stores. We aren’t trashing cars. The protestors are getting their message out.

So who is acting like morons now? The people in cities that have violence associated with protests? Or the people of Brevard who don’t need violence to make a point and to be heard?

Kneeling during the National Anthem as a form of protest will soon become de rigueur in sports.

Many people are still against the kneeling of athletes during the National Anthem. You can include us in that group.

A few weeks ago, NFL star JJ Watt had this to say concerning kneeling:

Houston Texans star J.J. Watt tweeted Saturday that kneeling during the national anthem is not about “disrespecting” the American flag or the military.

One person wrote, in a now-deleted tweet, that he was “pretty sure” the three-time Defensive Player of the Year would not be taking a knee, along with three American flag emojis.

Watt clapped back, responding Saturday: “Don’t speak for me”

“If you still think it’s about disrespecting the flag or our military, you clearly haven’t been listening,” Watt tweeted.

We think it is Watt and others who aren’t listening.

If the protest is not about the country, the flag and the national anthem, why protest during the time when the anthem is being played? Why not make statements at another time of the game?

While we can all say that “taking a knee” is not about “disrespecting the flag or our military,” why is it that so many people feel that the the kneeling at that point in time is disrespectful?

Why not make the statement that we are united as one people and one nation while standing for the National Anthem and then protest what you feel is an injustice at another time?

You may remember University of Florida Gator Tim Tebow. Once in the pros, he was told that he could not write a Bible verse on his eye black patches, and could not kneel and pray – even briefly – on the field after a touchdown.

Players do all sorts of dances and “look at me celebrations” after a score or a play, but Tebow was told not to do something that was not intended to say “look at me.” It was the timing and the place that the NFL objected to. If Tebow could be told when and where he could pray, why can’t players be told when and where they can protest? After all, it is not a First Amendment issue as it is not the government censoring Tebow or the players.

Tebow was basically excoriated by the media for making such a “public display of his beliefs.” Teammates and other players spoke out saying his beliefs should not be part of sporting event.

So why is it then that….

It almost seems that the NFL and other sporting leagues are more into stopping some messages that may “offend” people, and promoting other messages that offend others – like vets and many Americans.

We don’t mind the protests. We really don’t. Protest after a score or after a big play.

Don’t do it during the National Anthem.

One Response to “Protests And Other Things.”

  1. Percy says:

    We need to face up to those that just want to tear down our society through division, I believe we now call it “identity politics”. The vocal minority does not want people to work together to solve issues, they only strive to divide. As I understand your article Colin and JJ says there is nothing disrespectful about kneeling but then elsewhere protesters are demanding that the emancipation statue with a freed slave kneeling is disrespectful and demeaning and needs to removed. I wonder if Colin and JJ feel demeaned when they are a knee.

    The history of our great country is what it is, some good, some bad. To deny it or try to rewrite it does service to no one.