Last Sunday Ray Lewis joined the Baltimore Ravens in taking a knee (or two knees in his case) during the playing of the U.S. National Anthem. However as it turns out, by doing so, he completely ignored the advise he gave to Colin Kaepernick on that very issue. Though to be fair to him he did say that by kneeling he wasn’t protesting, but was ‘praising God’. But I’ll address that claim later.
On the Skip and Shannon Undisputed Show September 2016, Ray Lewis said “My only advise to Colin Kaepernick is this. Listen, I understand what you’re trying to do; but understand take the flag out of it.” Also during September 2016, he gave this advise to Colin Kaepernick on Speak For Yourself with Jason Whitlock; “I think me, personally, if I was to share anything with Colin is stand firm. You know. Stand firm (in) what you believe in. But understand that it looks different. It looks awkward to fight this fight, where the fight is not there; it’s not on the football field…You can protest this but if you wanna protest it, go stand in front of a police station.”
Below is a picture of Ray Lewis, ignoring his own advise.
Ray Lewis in his own defense said; “I went (and) dropped on both knees so I can simply honor God in the midst of chaos,” (Charisma News) Ray Lewis’ expression here is key as it is worded so poignantly. He states that he was honouring “God in the midst of chaos.” even though that simply isn’t possible. God is not the God of Chaos but of Order.
Ray Lewis went on to say “You can protest; I’m gonna pray,…I’m not in the protesting business…I would never protest against my flag…” But Ray did protest his anthem and flag by kneeling with those who protested.
It’s clear Ray is being sincere in his response but in this case he doesn’t know up from down. Maybe he was pressured into it and the only way he could rationalize it was by telling himself he would bend both knees and pray, while the others protested. But the fact is they were there to protest. They knelt, to protest, while the U.S. anthem played. Ray Lewis did the same thing.
Ray Lewis knows that the posture he took, when his anthem was being played, was not the proper posture for the anthem, whether he was praying or not. In doing so he was perhaps trying to placate both sides of this fight, but has ended up pleasing no one.
How is what Ray Lewis did, any different from what Colin Kaepernick and the other 200 NFL players did? Colin knelt when he was supposed to stand, so did Ray. Whether Ray Lewis was praying or not is inconsequential. His actions demonstrate that he was with them. Locking arms with them, and kneeling with them, at the same time they knelt, while the anthem was played, is more than a sign of unity with their cause. They were there to protest the anthem, and by association, Ray did the same thing; whether he owns up to it or not.