Thursday, October 19, 2017

How to Fix America

How to Fix America

The media, overpaid Hollywood and sports personalities, along with political operatives have dominated the discussion and dialogue concerning patriotism for far too long.  I cannot identify with NFL players who are having a difficult time determining what it means to stand tall, hand over heart facing the flag during the national anthem. Or maybe I can since most of them that have made it to that level are there because they have been pampered and revered simply for playing a game.

Personally, I can attest to the fact that the flag and the national anthem do mean something to those of us who have served this country.  I come from a military family who served this country from unpopular wars in Vietnam (dad—Bronze Star) to Iraq (Marine son) and the Cold War (me and my two brothers).  None of us was drafted and we all knew what we signed up for. We also realized that we could have been called upon to give the ultimate sacrifice but thankfully we and our families were spared.  Millions of others who have served this country were not spared the heartache and pain from loss of life and loss of limb. It is time to hold people accountable for their careless words and actions:

1. NFL players need to stand up for our military who many times sacrifice beyond what any of them could ever comprehend.  This is not to say that this country is perfect and that there are not many forms of bigotry and racism, certainly there are. Yet, the Richard Bertrand Spencer’s of the world make up an infinitesimally small minority of “white” people.  Only a racist would lump people outside that group with that group.  This country reveres people like Martin Luther King, but thinks a southerner should be shunned if he thinks Robert E. Lee was a great man. BTW—Spencer was named after the atheist Bertrand Russell.  

2. Political personalities like a Congressman Frederica Wilson need to apologize for how they’ve disgraced an honored institution like the Marine Corps.  She was not elected to participate in our constitutional form of governmental to score political points at the expense of every military person who has served and especially those who have given their lives serving this country.  She did what politicians do today by spinning the narrative to score points with those who want to use any means including desecrating sacred honored traditions.  This is reprehensible behavior and cannot be ignored!

3. Hollywood personalities and the media allow people like Harvey Weinstein to perpetrate his abuse of women for decades.  He gave millions in hush money to mainstream political figures, yet the pampered Hollywood personalities don’t have the intestinal fortitude to do what is right.  Hollywood stars placed their personal fame and financial gain on the perverted altar of Harvey Weinstein.  These same Hollywood superstars with armed security guards and homes surrounded by walls produce all of the violent programming while being the most vocal outspoken critics of second amendment rights. It was not so sickening, it would be laughable.

4. The news media plastered Steven Paddock’s face on television screens across America for weeks and then pontificate why we continue to have these types of acts perpetrated upon the citizenry of America.  They all claim it’s the guns! I daresay that every nut job with a screw loose that wants to find a way to commit suicide in a blaze of glory has seen how to become a famous by surpassing Paddock’s reprehensible crime in Las Vegas.

Do you want to know how to fix America?  End the divisive rhetoric, demand an immigration policy that requires assimilation into our country, and find ways to identify and fix our broken system.  Furthermore quit expecting the government to be the solution when our Republic was never founded with that type of philosophy. Look at Houston for an example of how Americans can band together when times of crisis arise and then watch the constant coverage of Puerto Rico to see what happens when the media wants to spin a terrible situation to further divide this country.  

John Adams said, "Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other." This wise philosophy did not originate with John Adams but with the Bible as the book of Proverbs pronounces: “Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people” (Proverbs 14:34).  The problems in this country have only worsened since we threw God and the Bible out of the public school system.  Unfortunately, things will only continue to disintegrate as the religion of godlessness and a God-free society are perpetrated upon America.

Doug Stauffer (
October 19, 2017

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Patriotism Versus Police-Pig Socks

The current debate in the NFL highlights the revisionist rhetoric from the left and puts their hypocrisy on full display. Colin Kaepernick started the NFL Take-a-Knee protests by purposefully disrespecting those who carry a badge (that’s him wearing the POLICE ARE PIGS socks). In Kaepernick’s own words, he said he was “not going to stand up to show pride in a flag…” His freedom-of-expression protest was directed against the flag and against the United States of America. Fortunately for all of us, no one gets to decide what the flag of the United States or our National Anthem represent.  Those claiming that their first amendment rights allow them to redefine the purposes for the flag and the anthem are the same ones that do not offer the same latitude to a southerner concerning his Confederate flag.
The protesters: whether kneeling, sitting, or squatting, were all started by a man who wore PIG POLICE SOCKS. This expression clearly reflects this man’s utter disdain for the police.  His own words reveal why he knelt at the playing of the national anthem.  Yet, these facts are being rewritten or ignored by the pundits who want to spin this story into something that it is not.  These protests are about disrespecting the flag! Fortunately, the internet and social media platforms mean that the pundits can no longer dominate the dialog, control the discourse and freely force their spin upon all others.
In addition, those standing up for those taking a knee seem to think that the kneelers are the only ones with a FIRST AMENDMENT right to voice their concerns. When “the other side” voices our concerns contrary to the PC police; our voices are quickly pronounced as anti-first amendment.  Unfortunately, this is true of every important issue facing true Americans. If you are on the wrong side of political correctness, then your voice does not deserve the same right to be heard. 

For instance, the confederate flag represents one thing to the left and one thing only and that is racism. All of America must accept this stigmatism placed upon that flag (and any confederate statues) because the PC police have determined that that’s what the flag and the statues represent for all of America. In the case of the American flag, patriotic Americans are told to hush because now the American flag represents black oppression. The left want to silence us when we claim that the flag and the anthem represent patriotism and respect for those who served and sacrificed for this country.  These NFL protests started out as a way of disrespecting those who carry a badge, yet these same protestors cannot be disassociated with the disrespect that has been shown toward those who serve in the military.

The bottom line is that racism in all of its ugly forms does not justify disrespecting those who proudly wear a uniform to fight, defend, and protect the rights of overpaid sports celebrities to squat on Sundays. Since the media, sports personalities and Hollywood are influenced most by leftist liberals with the loudest voices they simply want to squash all dissenting voices. We will not be silenced so long as we continue to breathe!

These same pundits tell us that those in the south who are proud of their heritage and cherish their rebel flag do so simply because they are racists.  Yet, I know for a fact that many southerners believe that that flag of the south represents much more, things like States’ Rights against any type of a tyrannical federal government. Yet, these thoughts are unacceptable to the PC police because they fall outside of the talking points and their agendas.  

Racism no doubt exists and probably will always exist so long as people focus upon color rather than character.  Yet, when sports personalities decide to disrespect our symbols of patriotism (the flag and the anthem) and do so using the race card then the flames of racism will continue to be stoked by the very ones who seem to promote it most. The choice seems simple to me:  pig socks or patriotism? I will always honor our flag, our anthem and the brave men and women who serve even when those with money choose to disgrace our country.  

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Time to End the National Anthem

Granted, this nation has a short attention span and an even shorter memory, but it is time to focus and remember.

I have really struggled about whether to write this opinion but standing on the sidelines is no longer a viable option. I come from a military family (my dad, my brothers, my son, and I) all served honorably—from Viet Nam, to posts foreign and domestic, to Iraq. I also served in the Air Force Honor Guard and currently serve as a chaplain to the military. While some NFL players feel compelled to kneel together to make a statement, I feel compelled to STAND for those who can no longer STAND whether because of loss of life or loss of limb. I choose to stand for the children, the parents and the spouses who have made the ultimate sacrifice for this country.

I have always been proud to be an American but not too proud of what I see happening to America. This country desperately needs to be united but this usually only happens during times of war or a nationwide calamity. It has long been proclaimed that the United States of America will never be defeated by any invading military power. Likely, it will shamefully disintegrate from internal strife. It matters not who instigates the uproar whether communists, terrorists, leftists or the far-right. Unfortunately, the media seems to be simply stoking the self-destructive flames.

Why do true Americans pledge allegiance to a flag? The answer is really quite simple. The flag represents our united country of fifty states, in good times and in bad! Unfortunately, it seems like we may soon find fear for terrorism is overcome by a fear for anarchy, strife and social unrest from within. 

A Little History First

The National Anthem became a tradition in sporting events to focus people’s attention upon those who had served to insure the freedoms we so richly enjoy. It started with baseball amongst those steeped in wartime patriotism. In 1931, President Herbert Hoover signed a congressional resolution making the Star-Spangled Banner our National Anthem. The National Anthem and Old Glory are near and dear to those of us that have served along with those impacted by war and those conscious of the security that a strong military affords. Saluting the flag during the National Anthem is much more than a simple tradition to those who have served and sacrificed.

The Stars and Stripes and the National Anthem are patriotic symbols. Francis Scott Key wrote the Star-Spangled Banner two years after he witnessed a bloody battle between American and British troops in the Battle of Baltimore in the War of 1812. He wrote this poetic song as he saw the troops defend Fort McHenry in a day long battle. The garrison flag that was raised over that blood-drenched fort is housed at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History.

Those with graying heads remember that not too long ago, some in this country chose to spit upon and curse those returning from battle (Vietnam). For many decades these heroes were forgotten by the country they served, nevertheless most of them continued to love this country and show respect for it. My father is one of those men.

A lot has changed since 9/11 when America was attacked from without and stared into an uncertain future. On 9/11 things appeared to have suddenly spiraled out of control and the American people placed their hopes square upon the military. Americans—white, black, yellow, red, and brown—realized that we simply wanted a fix “over there” to stop any future attacks upon American soil. I saw and witnessed the transformation of America where every Vet and service member was now honored and truly appreciated. As a Vet, I appreciated the newfound and long overdue respect for the military, but still shuddered a bit when my son went to Iraq with the Marines.

A Nation of Diversity

This country is made up of good and bad people who do good and bad things to people of their own race as well as other races. A white man who shoots a person of color or a person of color who shoots a white man does not define a race of people. Yet, Colin Kaepernick, who began the NFL protests said this:  “I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color.” If the vast majority of non-black American citizens do not oppress blacks and other people of color, his statement comes across as simply a racist statement.

The supposed attention upon racial inequality and police brutality has brought most of the attention upon those who make millions through sport. Regardless of anyone’s intention, the result has been to show disrespect for our country and those who have served and died to defend it.  Loving this country (despite its many faults) is what it means to be an American and a true Patriot. Those who refuse to show pride in the Stars and Stripes should travel with me to some of the countries I have visited to see true oppression, poverty and despair. Most players and coaches would never dream of showing the same kind of attitude toward an opposing team before the game.

I’ve played sports all my life and love the distraction of watching a good college football game. There have always been good and bad examples. I was impressed by Deshaun Watson who saw people hurting in Texas and gave his first game check to three Texan employees who had lost cars or houses in the hurricane. If athletes are against black oppression they should get back on their feet and go to areas where the oppression is greatest (like inner city Chicago) and do something to directly impact those who are being oppressed the most. Instead, they kneel during an inappropriate time in the safety of an area where everyone has been thoroughly searched to insure their personal safety and security.

An Improper Balance

If all of this is about free speech and the First Amendment (which it is not) then why did the NFL threaten to fine players who wanted to remember those who died on 9/11? Yet, a player can wear “pig socks” because an anti-police movement is acceptable in the NFL? NFL players can show disrespect for those who wear a badge when the vast majority of the police are good decent hardworking men and women who serve to protect others. One of the key players stoking the flames reportedly lied about being singled out by the police in Las Vegas! Oh yes, my dad, in addition to being retired military, served for ten years as Captain of a police force!

Why can’t the NFL stop the sitters and squatters, but can refuse the Dallas Cowboys’ request to honor the slain police officers with a simple helmet decal? The real problem is political correctness and liberal agendas uniting to bring this country to its knees through racial strife, division, and hatred. Alejandro Villanueva, an offensive lineman with the Pittsburgh Steelers, standing alone during the Anthem and later apologizing is a great example. Why would a decorated Army Ranger who fought for this country feel compelled to apologize for standing rather than kneeling or skipping the anthem? Because it is not about the First Amendment or racial equality—it is about silencing all those who would disagree with this destructive political agenda.

Much work always needs to be done concerning social justice and it always will. We actually appreciate the peaceful civil disobedience but those protesting do not recognize that they are treading upon the sanctity of those who have given their all so that the protestors can have a voice in a free society. If it is not acceptable to spit in the face or upon the graves of those who have served, then it is also inconsiderate to refuse to honor those who have served by sitting, kneeling, or skipping out during the National Anthem. No stadium is big enough to justify disrespecting the flag which is representative of our country.

If Tim Tebow took a knee during the National Anthem, the left would have been in an uproar and people like me would have expressed our disdain too. Instead, he chose to acknowledge God when he felt particularly blessed. His critics chose to ridicule him because it made people feel uncomfortable to see such an open display of reverence toward God. I understand the ridicule from those whose bearings have become stripped, but Mr. Tebow also started charitable foundations and traveled throughout this land and abroad in support of those particular beliefs. In other words, his display on the field was simply an extension of himself and in no way done to garner personal attention or financial benefit.

Greatest Country on Earth

Do you know why people flee other countries to come to America? Because America is perfect? No, because we are the best country in the world even when we are being divided by those who have no respect for the fallen, the wounded warriors, those currently serving, or veterans. These players have the right to take a knee to make a statement, yet many of them do not think that those of us voicing our thoughts should be afforded equal opportunity. We are deemed uncaring or worse yet, racially insensitive.

Whitney Houston’s rendition of the National Anthem was a top-20 hit twice; once during the Persian Gulf War and then after 9/11. After 9/11 we had police officers and firefighters singing the National Anthem. Christina Aguilera and Roseanne Barr can attest to the national reaction when the anthem is disrespected—why should we give NFL players a pass?  Francis Scott Key wrote, “Our flag was still there” Now, it is being desecrated by those who have some of the best opportunities of what this country offers no matter the race. According to Forbes and the U.S. Army the average NFL salary is $2.1 million while the average Army sergeant salary is $32,029. Why the disparity? Because some have chosen to sacrifice while others are blessed to play for a living while being protected by those who put their lives on the line every day.

End the Anthem

Now we are hearing that it may be time to end this once honored tradition of singing the National Anthem and honoring our service members at sporting events. Those of us that have served would rather see this hallowed tradition end than to witness the disrespectful display by those who think their cause is more important than the ones who have truly sacrificed to give them the right to disrespect.  The fields are not equal: one plays for money and the other fights and defends His country.

I do not think a boycott is best since it will disproportionately impact blacks who make up a majority of those playing in the NFL.  Racism in all of its many forms is despicable! But so is this blatant anti-Americanism! When NFL players in London kneel for the U.S. National Anthem but stand for the British one—“God Save the Queen,” they are a national disgrace!

At the end of the day, the greatest impact of this act has been to further divide this great country between those who understand what that flag and the Anthem represent versus those who desecrate both with dishonorable actions. While we are at it, why not remove the flag pole from the stadium and let the fans decide whether they can support such an un-American institution? Patriotism is infectious but so is disloyalty to a country.

With the Anthem and the flag gone, why continue the hundreds of military flyovers? It should be noted where the Anthem and the flag are not welcome, neither are those who serve.  Just remember this: when we end the Anthem and strip the flag poles, those who wish to divide this country will probably have the means to destroy it too. However, this pendulum could quickly swing in the other direction but no patriotic American wants what it will take for sports celebrities to again stand tall with their right hands once again upon their hearts in unity.