Every week more NFL players refuse to stand for the national anthem. After Colin Kaepernick started the protest back during the start of the 2016 NFL season, more players from around the country are taking a knee during the Star Spangled Banner so they can join the protest aimed to raise awareness around police brutality and racial inequality in the United States. But while players took a knee during the pregame ceremony, the real story was unfolding outside of the stadium.
A group of protestors organized by Jamalh Bryant were gathered outside of the Baltimore Ravens’ game to extend the protest from the field and out into the street. While the Ravens players kneeled on the field, Bryant and his protestors took a knee outside of the stadium and lifted their fists into the air in support of the cause and Colin Kaepernick.
In the video below you can see Jamalh Bryant and the crowd behind him taking a knee at the exact moment the national anthem begins to play. They remain down during the entire tribute to the United States of America. And after the moment is through, the protestors begin to pray:
“I pray that you’ll give liberty and justice for all. Make America great for the very first time. I pray that you will stop mass incarceration and unclog the prison pipeline. Give our young black and brown boys an opportunity to excel and do well. We stand on the shoulders of the ancestors who were killed and lynched. So that the next generation might in fact have access to democracy and live out the unfulfilled truths in the constitution.”
They went onto say:
“I pray for every player that takes a knee in courage and for every person who will find strength to look in the face of white supremacy and racism so that we will be able to say to the next generation ‘We took a stand so you won’t have to take a bow.’ It’s in the name of an innocent black man named Jesus who was killed by the government that we pray and we find our strength, amen.”
The protestors say that they gathered to raise awareness around police brutality and violence against minorities and to fight racial inequality in the United States.
But as the group of protestors knelt, one man stood among them like a beacon of hope.
While Jamalh Bryant and the protestors knelt during the national anthem, a police officer stood following through with his promise to protect and serve everyone in the community. Even if the protestors were protesting his very existence as an officer, he was stood there strong and proud willing to put his life on the line for the people he vowed to protect.
Some police officers might be bad, but the vast, vast majority are good people who want to do right by their communities.
What do you make of Jamalh Bryant’s peaceful protest and their prayer? And what do you think about the police officer who stood bravely by as the protestors spoke out against his career?