In high school, I enlisted in the Army and served in the 25th Infantry Division. I never went to war, but I served alongside some real heroes and grew deeply loyal to the service of those who fought and died. To me, as you might guess, the United States flag and National Anthem represent solemn reverence to combat veterans, the fallen and their families.

So to me, even as a lifelong football fan, it seems pretty normal to find something offensive about players continuing to take the knee during the anthem, especially after so many people have made clear how uncomfortable it makes them feel. After all, if you walk up to me and stomp on my foot, I’ll give you a pass if you say it was an accident. You don’t even have to apologize. But the second time you do it, I know that you know that you hurt my foot when you stomped on it. Yet you’ve chosen to hurt my foot again and again, so that speaks volumes about you.