Hypocritical to refuse to stand

Really? Rich, spoiled professional athletes refusing to stand for the flag of the country that affords them the freedom and opportunity to earn such ridiculous amounts of prestige and money? A country that is, at the very least, among the greatest to live in, but far from perfect in many aspects of society.

That being said, these athletes have been given the means and resources by the USA (albeit through their hard work and dedication) to select any other country (and its flag) in which to reside, all of which will be short of perfection.

I find it hypocritical to refuse to stand as a small gesture of gratefulness to that flag, while at the same time being more than willing to accept all the freedom, benefits and especially the monetary rewards of that very same flag.

Why not trade in just one of your gold-and-diamond-filled pieces of jewelry or customized luxury automobiles as a donation to a struggling cause or worthy charity?

Thank you to the numerous professional athletes who are extremely generous with their time and money to worthwhile causes because of a genuine concern and interest within their hearts, all the while without any expectations of fanfare or notoriety in return. 

How is it that we have gotten so spoiled, to the point that such a simple gesture of gratitude and respect for all that we do have, has become so taboo and scrutinized?

As for me, being an ex-athlete, sports and NFL-loving non-veteran, minority of this country, I will to my dying breath continue to not only stand on my feet for our flag, forever grateful for what our country affords me, but also drop to my knees in prayer for hope that things will get better.

Geno Alvino

Santa Maria