Ravens Ben Watson Weighs In on the National Anthem Controversy

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Tue, Sep 6 - 2:37 pm EDT | 2 years ago by
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Benjamin Watson

Baltimore Ravens tight end Ben Watson is out for the season with a torn Achilles, but that doesn’t mean he’s out of the spotlight.

This week, everyone is talking about Watson’s take on the National Anthem and Colin Kaepernick.

Watson explains in his Facebook post why he chooses to stand.

“If I am fortunate enough to ever be dressed for another game day I imagine I would be doing the same thing I did in my last. Standing. Not because America is ALL I desire it to be because most assuredly it is not. Racism still stews, families are fractured, the unborn are trashed, schools are struggling, religious freedom is increasingly under attack, violence pollutes our cities and our suburbs, and there is a growing divide between law enforcement and the community,” Watson wrote.

“I stand, however, because I grew up in NAVY town USA and traveled overseas to support members of our armed forces who follow orders regardless of their personal sentiments. I stand for those who were forced to give their lives building the country that confined them to the tobacco fields and indigo plantations. I stand because as a child, I saw my father stand. A man who lived the tumultuous transition from “separate but equal” to the times surrounding the Civil Rights Act when angry people who held signs at his new school viscously screamed “NIGGER GO HOME!” I stand because on the contrary, no one held such a sign when I walked into my grade school.”

“I never forget the ills of America but for a moment I envision its potential, remember its prosperity and give thanks to God for the land He has placed me in and the people I love who live in it. I stand, because this mixed bag of evil and good is MY home,” he continued.

“And because it’s MY home, my standing is a pledge to continue the fight against all injustice and preserve the greatest attributes of the country, including Colin Kaepernick’s right to kneel,” Watson added.

Watson – who is black and Christian – has often spoken out about race issues in America. His Facebook post last year about the events in Ferguson, Missouri went viral, and since that time he has released a book entitled, “Under Our Skin: Getting Real About Race–And Getting Free From the Fears and Frustrations That Divide Us.”

Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images

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