I have been a fan on the Dallas Cowboys for as long as I can remember. Just as Mark Wills sings “I was Roger Staubach in my back yard” when I was a young boy.
I cheered wildly in my grandparents’ den as Tony Dorsett rushed for 99 yards in a single play against the Vikings to set the record that will never be broken.
I watched in admiration as Too Tall Jones and Randy White took back to back penalties just to prove to the Eagles that you do not slap a Cowboy.
I beamed with pride as I watched George Teague defend the star and I jumped over the couch when Troy Akimen and Michael Irvin made it look easy against the Bills in the Super Bowl.
As a senior in high school I was there with my cousin and uncle for the greatest comeback in Cowboy history when the Cowboys scored 21 points in the fourth quarter against the Saints to send the game into overtime in 1984.
I was there again with my wife when Emmitt Smith became the all-time leading rusher and later our newborn son went home from the hospital wrapped in a handmade Dallas Cowboys quilt given to him by his Mamaw. This was the day after he, at two days old, had been held in front the television for the entire game by his father so he could watch America’s team beat the Giants for the first time.
But on a recent Monday night the Cowboys did something they have never done before. They made me ashamed to be a fan of the team. That evening the team walked to the middle of the field and took a knee as a sign of solidarity with those before them who have refused to stand during our national anthem.
There is no excuse nor justification for such despicable conduct. What political party, politician or social cause a person supports or does not support is a personal choice. But those who disrespect our country take for granted that they live in a country that allows them such freedom.
To abuse freedom in such a way is shameful and every American who loves our country should refuse to attend another NFL game, purchase another NFL product or even watch another game on television until these disgraceful displays stop.
Preston Ray Garrett