The NFL players who disrespect the American flag each weekend must be very proud today as news broke about the little children who play on the Cahokia Quarterback Club football team. The kids, who are 8 years and under, took a knee during the national anthem ahead of Sunday’s game at Little Devil’s Field in Belleville, Missouri.
“One of the kids on the team asked me if I saw people protesting and rioting in St. Louis. I said yes; and I asked ‘Do you know why they are doing it,’” recalled Coach Orlando Gooden.
The young player responded, “Because black people are getting killed and nobody’s going to jail.”
Gooden said the kids were well-aware of the not-guilty verdict of a white cop who killed a black man. “I felt like it was a good teaching moment for me to circle the team and have a meeting,” he said.
The coach spoke to the children about that and other situations that have happened in our country. He then explained why former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick started kneeling during the anthem.
“One of the kids asked, ‘Can we do that?’ I said, ‘As long as we know why we’re doing it, I don’t have a problem with any of it,’” the coach replied.
When the anthem started, the Cahokia third graders immediately took a knee where they were standing. Their backs were away from the flag.
“What I teach my kids is love, integrity, honesty, fairness, respect and boundaries,” he said.
All the parents on the team supported the coach’s decision to take a knee. However, a Facebook post by Gooden’s wife was met with some backlash.
“As long as I have support of my parents and team, I’m perfectly fine, and I’m covered under the First Amendment to peacefully protest and assemble,” Gooden said.
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