Denver veterans split on controversy surrounding kneeling during national anthem

DENVER — Broncos fans have a wide range of opinions when it comes to NFL players taking a knee during the national anthem but it may be the opinions of those who fought for our country that matter the most.

Wounded five times in Vietnam, Dennis Johnson still supports NFL players’ right to protest during the national anthem,"When I first got back from Vietnam the only thing I really got riled up about is when I saw somebody burn the flag, he said.

"I fought for my country for people to have the choice to do what they want and that’s how I feel they have the right to either stand or kneel", he added.

But combat veterans here at Denver’s VA hospital were split over the issue.

"I think it’s wrong they’re disrespecting the flag they’re disrespecting the country," said combat veteran Malcolm Adkins.

Manuel Martinez Jr., also a combat veteran, expressed frustration that the anthem has become divisively politicized. "The president shouldn’t have got his nose involved with the national football league and I feel that we have a right to our opinions," he said.

But others believe the focus should not be a fight over Trump and NFL players but on social injustice, which is how they protests started last season.

" We as black veterans came back to this country with no rights we fought for that flag and came back here and still was discriminated against so these are the issues that need to be addressed in this country," said combat veteran Paul Perry.

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