by Lou Gehrig Burnett, Publisher of Fax-Net
A Tale of Two Parishes
The national controversy over whether athletes should stand for the National Anthem has hit home in Bossier and Caddo parishes. And there are stark differences in how it is being handled in each parish.
Bossier took the lead. In a statement, the Bossier Parish School System said any student who does not stand during the National Anthem while participating in extracurricular activities will face consequences.
The loud and emotional primal scream involving the NFL players, the American flag, President Donald Trump has subsided slightly due to the volume of other intervening events--yelling for attention and because various NFL teams have taken a different approach—take a knee before the National Anthem but stand when the music begins.
The President dedicated a golf trophy on Sunday to the citizens of Texas, Florida, and the lazy, broke, infrastructure-challenged Puerto Ricans who want everyone to do everything for them. Devastated, homeless, foodless, waterless, powerless, and despairing, Donald Trump blamed them for their own woes in the same breath he used to praise himself for helping these American citizens. Would that this were true.
The "Take a Knee" conflict that has developed between the NFL, NFL owners, NFL players and President Donald Trump and his supporters has sent shock waves and anger throughout America over the issue of whether the players and the league are being unAmerican and unpatriotic.
The issue surrounding the Kaepernick-Trump-National Anthem-NFL and locally, the New Orleans Saints continues to swirl like a storm hitting a Caribbean Island today.
President Donald Trump has hit a nerve that could hit some NFL owners in the pocketbook. His comments about the National Anthem and the American Flag has send shockwaves and clarion calls across the NFL nation. Communities all over are beginning to question the wisdom of helping to help subsidize National Football League teams. Much of the outrage against the popular American sport is in response to the NFL’s action this weekend of “taking a knee”.
For most of their 50 years, the New Orleans Saints have been a losing franchise. It took 20 years for the team to make the playoffs and other another 13 years to secure the first playoff victory. It took a total of 42 years for the team to finally win the Super Bowl.
In my world, it is repugnant to abuse the flag or not stand up during the National Anthem. This country can withstand football players and sports figures protests in this way, but, I am still repulsed by it.
Ever since Friday night's Alabama speech, Donald Trump has had plenty to say about the American Flag, the National Anthem and the NFL disrespecting those great American symbols.
In fact, as of this writing, he has tweeted or retweeted about the issue 19 times. During that same period, not a single tweet about the likes of Puerto Rico which is an American territory and whose citizens are American citizens.
Brees had it right: Anthem is a time for unity, not protest!
On Thursday, I got a call from Doug Mouton, an old friend who is sports director of WWL-TV, asking if I would appear on the station’s popular “Fourth Down on Four” broadcast on Sundays after Saints games. I couldn’t turn him down because Doug’s been a friend since I came to the Saints at a time he was laboring at the bottom of the TV sports spectrum as a cameraman. Plus, a little visibility helps sell books as well as infusing some credibility into my website, speaking engagements and family discussions.