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I’ve run into a challenge from people who oppose Colin Kaepernick’s refusal to stand for the national anthem:

If you support Kaepernick’s refusal to stand as an example of his First Amendment freedom to oppose and protest his country’s actions, why are you against flying the Confederate battle flag, which also represents a defiant rebel spirit?

For me, the key is why Kaepernick kneels and why other people fly the stars and bars.

Kaepernick explained: “I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and [other] people of color.” (http://www.nfl.com/…/colin-kaepernick-explains-why-he-sat-d…)

Whether you agree with his politics or not, Kaepernick says that he kneels to honor people of color; but the Confederate flag flies to honor, among other things, a heritage of treason and war against the United States, largely in support of slavery.

(I know that the stars and bars can mean something different in the eyes of different people. But we’re talking here about flying the flag for the same purpose as Kaepernick’s kneeling: to make a protest or to honor a group of people.)

Personally, I lean more toward Kaepernick’s viewpoint than toward the Confederate side.

But both sides have the right to express themselves, whether by kneeling or by flying a flag.