Ravens Players Stand for 'Black National Anthem,' Kneel During 'Star-Spangled Banner'


New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees vowed earlier this year that he would always stand for his country’s flag and national anthem.

“I will never agree with anybody disrespecting the flag of the United States of America or our country,” Brees said in June.

You got the feeling the Super Bowl MVP and 13-time Pro Bowler was willing to fight for his principles — but Brees rolled over quickly when called out by teammates and others who claimed his patriotic stance was racially insensitive and “ignorant.”

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In a revised perspective 48 hours later, the quarterback authored an Instagram post aimed at President Donald Trump in which he wrote, “Through my ongoing conversations with friends, teammates, and leaders in the black community, I realize this is not an issue about the American flag. It has never been.”

“We can no longer use the flag to turn people away or distract them from the real issues that face our black communities,” Brees said in a statement that portrayed the Saints star as a feckless man with no backbone.

But the anthem protests were and always have been about the flag.

“I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color,” then-San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick told reporters when he started the trend in 2016.

For further evidence of that, look no further than Sunday’s game between the Baltimore Ravens and the Cleveland Browns at M&T Bank Stadium.

Before the Ravens beat the breaks off the Browns, the team stood for “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” which the NFL has described as the “black national anthem.”

“The Star-Spangled Banner,” meanwhile, was poorly received by the Ravens.

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As OutKick founder and sports commentator Clay Travis noted Sunday, “The Ravens stood for the black national anthem. And then most of the team kneeled for the national anthem. That, my friends, is a REALLY bad look.”

Added Travis, “Question: how can the Ravens argue it’s not about respect for the anthem when they stand for the black national anthem and kneel for the United States national anthem? They can’t. They’ve checkmated themselves.”

Travis hit the nail on the head with his take on the team’s decision to stand for what has been portrayed as an anthem for black Americans while so many of the players refused to honor the country that has made them unbelievably rich.

Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti said in a statement Sunday that he supported the players’ “right to protest peacefully,” adding, “This was not a protest against our country, the military or the flag.”

But that doesn’t square with the fact that so many Ravens stood during “Lift Every Voice” but took a knee during “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

If the league’s social justice stance were indeed solely about promoting awareness of perceived systemic racism and rampant police bias and brutality against black and other minority Americans, then the players would have avoided so overtly disrespecting the flag, the anthem and everything both represent.

Players had no issue with standing for a song billed as some sort of alternate anthem for black Americans.

No such anthem exists.

Do you think NFL anthem kneeling is a protest of our country and flag?

There is one national anthem, and it should unite all of us — especially during sporting events, when people generally just want to fall into a bit of escapism for a few hours with their fellow Americans.

But we didn’t need the despicable display Sunday in Baltimore to tell us the truth about the anthem protests.

Kaepernick, the original anthem kneeler, has been telling us for quite some time that woke activism is absolutely about disrespecting the American flag and about challenging all the institutions that have made the country exceptional.

On July 4, the former NFL quarterback labeled Independence Day as a “celebration of white supremacy,” a view that should be rejected.

Apologies to Drew Brees, but the anthem protests are about the American flag.

The kneeling is a not-so-subtle message that America’s past, present and future are being challenged, and it’s happening right out in the open.

Players are not kneeling during the anthem — they’re kneeling because of the anthem.

The NFL is now an extension of the Black Lives Matter movement, which is led by people who seek to destroy capitalism and bury the nuclear family.

Their endgame is not touchdowns; it is the takedown of the country and its values.

The Browns lost Sunday, but so did those who are pushing the league’s false narrative that protesting during the national anthem merely offers players a high-profile platform to show awareness for the issues they care about.

The league has given rioting, looting and ambushing cops its tacit endorsement as it aligns itself with movements responsible for ugly violence in cities such as Portland, Oregon, and Compton, California.

With the “woke” NFL maligning its once-loyal supporters and turning its games into weekly political conventions, the only recourse for patriotic fans is to steer clear of the league and watch its television ratings plummet.

Professional sports, once overwhelmingly apolitical, are now ground zero in the fight for the soul and the future of the country.

The league’s players are counting on you to give in and accept their leftist political dogmas.

Don’t give them an inch.

You didn’t choose the fight, nor did you want it, but you’re in it.

How will you respond?

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Johnathan Jones has worked as a reporter, an editor, and producer in radio, television and digital media.
Johnathan "Kipp" Jones has worked as an editor and producer in radio and television. He is a proud husband and father.