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After a particularly exciting Chief’s game, my mom made a comment about wanting to purchase a Marcus Peters shirt for my younger brother.

A family member responded to her and suggested buying him a Tyreek Hill shirt instead. He’s had a great season, after all.

My mom said that, no, she wouldn’t buy anything with Hill’s name on it, because he has a history of domestic abuse.

“But Marcus Peters kneels,” was the reply she got.

Disregarding the fact that Peters has only sat down during the national anthem and hasn’t actually kneeled, my question is: how can protesting at a football game be comparable to domestic violence?

I understand that to some people, the anthem and the flag are a symbol of our nation. But others don’t make that same connection.

The flag isn’t synonymous to our identity as a nation.

No one particular group owns the flag.

It’s a symbol that represents all Americans, even those who are trying to exercise their freedom of speech and are kneeling during the national anthem.

Yet, some people continue to view the protest as an attack against the military, their values and the nation as a whole.

NFL players, like Colin Kaepernick, the Chief’s Chris Conley and Marcus Peters, are peacefully protesting police brutality and racial inequality in America.

They’re speaking out on a national platform to bring awareness to their cause.

The military doesn’t own the flag any more than I or Kaepernick do. They aren’t charged with protecting the flag, but American citizens.

And Americans have the right to legally protest.

That’s not to say that I’m not appreciative of everything that the military does for us. They risk their lives for America, day in and day out.

But I just want to know when protesting the national anthem suddenly became equal to, or even worse, than abusing your pregnant girlfriend, as Hill did.

All I ask is that we take a step back and look at the bigger picture. By protesting during a football game, these players aren’t hurting anyone.

They’re only expressing the injustices that they face and trying to make everyone see them too.

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