Tom Brady, who is one of the highest paid athletes in the world, makes an average of $20,500,000.00 a year to play the game of football. That is in and around a million dollars a game if you include either the pre or post season…roughly. He also received a $28,000,000.00 signing bonus for two years; 28 large for signing a contract – but it isn’t about the money (insert eye roll).

When Tom throws a TD to any receiver on the team at his home stadium, fans STAND and praise his efforts. They cheer and yell and clap with devotion. The fans STAND for the NFL player that represents their hometown… they love Tom. They don’t care that Tom is making enough money in one hour for most folks to live the rest of their lives on; they are just there loving the game and supporting the NFL.

But here is the deal for most people. They will never have the opportunities Tom has, or any NFL player for that matter. The average Joe will always be just that – average. They will never receive 41 million ducats over two years to throw the pigskin; the closest they will ever get to that is eating bacon.

But this article is not solely about what Tom or others in the NFL get paid, it’s about the fact that they get paid stupid money to play a silly game and they are using that platform to denigrate our nation’s military and law enforcement – the same people that protect their sorry asses at the stadium while they make more money than most will ever see in ten lifetimes.

Pathetic doesn’t start to describe their antics.

And yet, we STAND and cheer when they make a great play, or score, or deliver a dramatic hit.

I, like so many, take exception to their behaviors during the playing of our anthem. Where our military is present and our law enforcement are STANDING watch. Why does this bother me, and so many others like me?  Because we have buried our friends, our peers, and our partners in the line of duty. We have watched as the tears flowed down their children’s faces; knowing that their mom or dad will never come home – ever again.

Colin Kaepernick started his movement due to what he called “police brutality”. I will paste one of his original statements right here:

“There are things we can do to hold them more accountable. Make those standards higher. You have people that practice law and are lawyers and go to school for eight years, but you can become a cop in six months and don’t have to have the same amount of training as a cosmetologist. That’s insane. Someone that’s holding a curling iron has more education and more training than people that have a gun and are going out on the street to protect us.”

Now, let me make one thing very clear – Colin is an educated man. He went to college and exceled while he attended the University of Nevada. He amassed amazing stats as a player in college as well; he even set a couple NCAA records. Great job Colin – truly, kudos for your accomplishments.

But where did you STAND (insert pun) in college on this narrative you now kneel for as a pro?

You insult what you do not know nor can speak intelligently about, then hide behind your statements while being protected by the very people you insult – because you are a coward. People praise you for your strength to speak out, but what are you truly espousing? That cops are dumb?

You claim there is police brutality and that is the reason for your cause. Well, I cannot deny there are some bad cops; there are bad people everywhere. Heck Colin, look around your locker room, how many felons are you working along side of? Well, technically, you aren’t working, you are playing a game; actually, you aren’t even playing – you’re just a mouthpiece in a spotlight, but I digress. I bet I know a couple cosmetologists that can throw better than you sir, and yet you are sitting out there making millions to do nothing – literally and figuratively. Oh, nice pig socks Colin – I mean really…

While you are afforded the right to kneel by your equally cowardly NFL headmaster, Mr. Goodell, it doesn’t make your cause true nor completely accurate.

I have researched intently on this subject of police brutality, and here is what I found. There is some. There are obvious cases – Rodney King anyone? I have also researched intently on black related crime… Colin, I assure you sir, there is absolutely no comparison. While any brutality is wrong, black on black crime is out of control; Chicago anyone?

The point to all this minutia he and others have created is simple.

You have a lot of overpaid athletes who in the off season are as non-existent as a snowy day in LA, but when the season kicks off and they have their salaries guaranteed – they come out in force. But where were you during the Chicago summer where hundreds were shot by blacks? The cops weren’t driving around shooting people at will, they were running code to the scene to stop it.

Anyone can trumpet a cause when they are protected and adored by millions – it takes guts to step up when you don’t have the protections or the money that these guys get paid to STAND for your cause.

Tom and Colin are but two people in the NFL. Both are QB’s, but only one has real NFL quality talent; the other needs the exposure, so he uses a false narrative to garner said attention.

You want the protests to stop by NFL players? Here is a very simple solution.

Do not buy tickets. Do not buy merchandise. Do not turn on ESPN or any other source that promotes them. You think that won’t work?? Think again. It’s a guarantee that it will work. It’s guaranteed because the money that drives all of it, will go bye bye and these guys will be left wondering what the hell just happened.

But as long as people pay their salaries and go to the games, you are empowering these men to do what they do – to denigrate our armed forces and our law enforcement; and to live their famous lives with near endless funds. Think about that the next time you go drop a grand to take your family to a game and then STAND and cheer for men that no more care about you, than they do for the young poor black people dying on the streets everyday at the hands of their own race. That is the real tragedy here… and it’s a shame.

Colin and others could use their fame to go into the cities and denounce violence, and yes, even address cases where police brutality has happened; but don’t for a second believe that cops are just running around killing blacks – blacks are doing that and it must stop! Just as I denounce with harshness and directness, terrorism abroad, or white people that are racists and target blacks; and vise versa.

I STAND for what’s right – what do you STAND for?

Micah Richardson is a retired Peace Officer and Commander.  He’s a husband of 24 years and father of two amazing kids.  Micah is also a founding member at Operation Innocence, proud American and a Whiskey Patriot.  Micah is currently the Chief Operating Officer at Isaiah Systems Safety Consulting… not to mention a guy who prays … and hopes you will, too.