Virgil Green

On Sept. 1, 2016, San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick heeded the advice of former Army Green Beret and Seahawks long-snapper Nate Boyer and changed his approach. Instead of sitting during the national anthem, as he had for three preseason games to protest the oppression of African-Americans and minorities, Kaepernick took a knee.

The action, while still bothersome to Boyer, was a compromise. But in the 400-plus days since Kaepernick kneeled on the sideline of Qualcomm Stadium, the national conversation about protests has spiraled into a divisive and political debate. When NFL owners and players convene next week at the league’s fall meetings, a decision could be made to require players to stand for the national anthem, adding a new and even more tenuous wrinkle to a controversy that has created confusion and incited strong, and varied, reactions.

Buccaneers defensive tackle Gerald McCoy has said there would be “an uproar” if owners mandated players stand.

“Because you’re basically taking away a constitutional right to freedom of speech,” he told reporters. “If guys wanna have a, I guess you would call it a peaceful protest, I don’t think it’s right to take that away.”

But Broncos cornerback Aqib Talib, who kneeled during the team’s mass protest in Buffalo, said he would be unaffected.

“I don’t feel like taking a knee and all that, it doesn’t really solve a problem in my eyes,” he said. “There definitely is a problem out there, but taking a knee and all that — I stand for the people who go to war for us. (President) Trump may make us go to war again, and then those guys are going to go to war for us again. So that’s why I’m standing. I appreciate everything those guys do.”

In recent days control of the debate has seemingly become a tug …read more

Source:: The Denver Post – Sports

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