By Victor Ochieng
If there is something that’s drawing mixed reactions, it’s the kneeling protest, which is now becoming a signature for several NFL teams. Besides being controversial, it’s leaving so many people, including the church, so confused that they don’t know what to make of it. In fact, we’ve even seen some pastors from the same denomination expressing conflicting views on the protest.
Not left out are current and former NFL players. On Sunday, it came as a surprise to see Ray Lewis, who’d previously criticized Colin Kaepernick for kneeling during the national anthem, go down on both knees during a similar moment. This act didn’t go unnoticed, and it attracted reactions from different people, especially from those who were aware of his criticism against Kaepernick.
His former teammate Shannon Sharpe reacted to this during Monday’s edition on “Undisputed,” expressing his disappointment with Lewis’ act. The main reason why Sharpe wasn’t happy with the former Baltimore Ravens linebacker was that he’d said so many times that he’d never kneel during the National Anthem.
But that attracted a counter disappointment if anything like that exists. Lewis wasn’t happy because he believes Sharpe, a friend, should’ve first asked him why he changed his mind and knelt after saying several times that he’d never do something like that. Lewis feels that at least he should’ve done that before making a strong comment on the issue. How come he didn’t even notice that Lewis was actually on both knees and not just one like the protesters normally do it?
In his response to critics, Lewis said he wasn’t kneeling to protest, but was basically praising God. While the rest of those who’re kneeling are doing so in protest against racial injustice in America, Lewis is kneeling to show honor and give praise to God.
The kneeling protest was started by Kaepernick. He remained with one knee down while his teammates and the stadium stood alert during the singing of the National Anthem. Because of that single act, he was widely criticized, with some saying he was showing disrespect to the flag and the nation at large. He explained his reason and continued doing so in subsequent events.
Other people then started kneeling in solidarity with him in his protest against racial injustices that are bedeviling America.