From Washington Examiner
A celebrated Dallas cop is calling on Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, and the whole team, to stand, not sit, during the National Anthem for their September 11 opener against the Miami Dolphins, charging that a protest would be a “slap in the face” to the 2,996 victims of the 9/11 attacks.
In an open letter to Wilson, Officer Dan Russell, a big Seahawks fan, urged the team to find other ways to voice their civic activism than ‘diss the Star Spangled Banner.
Russell, whose pictures of calm during the July police slayings in Dallas went viral on the internet, promised that if the team doesn’t follow the lead of San Francisco backup quarterback Colin Kaepernick, then cops will stand with the Seahawks. Reports indicate that the whole team is considering sitting or kneeling during the anthem.
“Stand for The Star Spangled Banner. We who serve will stand with you,” wrote the officer.
It comes as the nation is growing divided by Kaepernick’s move, which he said is to highlight racial problems in the country.
Football, and other major sports, has become very supportive of first responders and the military, especially after the 9/11 attacks.
Just this week, for example, Green Bay Packers Coach Mike McCarthy and the team each donated $100,000 to the Green Bay Police Foundation.
Here is a transcript of Russell’s post:
In response to the rumors of a Seattle Seahawks team sit-down for the Star Spangled Banner on 09/11, I wrote this open letter to Russell Wilson and posted it on his Facebook page. Dear Mr. Wilson,My name is Dan Russell. I am a lifelong Seattle Seahawks fan, a native Washingtonian, and I have the humble privilege of serving as a Police Officer in my community.
I am the Officer in these photos – two of which went viral — taken in Dallas on 07/07 at the scene where 14 police officers were shot in an ambush; five of whom perished from their injuries.
I decided to dedicate myself to a life of Service on a Tuesday morning sitting in my parents living room on 09/11/2001, as I watched live footage of a plane crash into the World Trade Center. I woke up my brother, a serving United States Marine at the time, to give him the news — America was under attack.
On that sunny and bright Tuesday, 2,996 Americans lost their lives. 343 of those lost were firefighters, and 71 were law enforcement officers. In response to the worst terrorist attack in our Nation’s history, millions answered the call to Service — to Serve their Nation in the military, to Serve their communities as Police Officers, firefighters, dispatchers, paramedics, or as the family of one of these intrepid selfless individuals.
Every day, more choose to answer the call to Serve — inspired by those events of fifteen years ago and the selfless sacrifice of so many that came before them.
I chose to Serve on 09/11/2001. After Ferguson in 2014 I found myself questioning my choice of career and vocation. A visit to Ground Zero reminded me that I was Serving something bigger than myself – something beautiful and everlasting.
I humbly ask – I beg – that you do not sit down for The Star Spangled Banner on this coming Sunday, the 15th anniversary of 09/11/2001.
To do so would be a slap in the face to millions of fans, millions of public Servants, millions of Americans, to 09/11 first responders, to the survivors, and to the families of all that were involved and impacted by that terrible day, most of all —
To those 2,996 who fell in an act of hatred towards our country and all we stand for.
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