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Letter: No, kneeling during the anthem isn’t some new form of respect

San Francisco Giants’ Chadwick Tromp, middle, kneels next to Mike Yastrzemski, second from right, during the national anthem before the team’s baseball game against the Seattle Mariners in San Francisco on Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2020.
Jeff Chiu, Associated Press

I am in my 80s, and since I was a young schoolchild we stood on both feet, at “attention” and hand over our hearts during the playing of the national anthem. This continued throughout my life, including my tour of duty with the U.S. Army. So whenever the flag and the United States of America were being presented for honoring, each individual would stand at “attention,” right hand — unless it is missing or incapacitated — over their heart until the music stopped. If you are in uniform, you do a hand salute until the music stops.

An angry football player in protest kneeled at the playing of the national anthem. As the years have gone by, more players in sports have shown their disrespect toward the United States of America by taking a knee. Mr. Kidd would have me believe that taking a knee is now showing respect for the flag and the United States of America — that is not so (“Letter: I’ll take a knee — for the flag, for those in uniform and for God“ Sep. 15). But it has reduced the number of sporting events I watch on TV or attend.

Richard Messenger