Two self-entitled high school football players from Texas decided to “take a knee” while the National Anthem was played before their game on Friday night. Their disrespectful protest was short-lived, though, because their coach quickly took something of theirs in response.
Head Coach Ronnie Mitchem (left), Cedric Ingram-Lewis and his cousin Larry McCullough (right) (Photo Credit: Daily Mail/ABC13, Cedric Ingram-Lewis)
Cedric Ingram-Lewis and Larry McCullough should have known that Texans have no patience for underage thugs who disrespect the country and flag which brave men and women have fought and died to protect, but the two high school football players learned that lesson the hard way. Before their game on Friday night, the pair took a knee while the National Anthem was played.
Ingram-Lewis, a sophomore, said the topic of protesting had come up in the locker room before and his cousin McCullough, a senior, even announced he would kneel via social media. However, lest any of his players think he was ambiguous on the subject or might look the other way if they decided to kneel during the anthem, head coach Ronnie Mitchem explicitly told players that they were not to kneel.
Mitchem is a former Marine and pastor who started the church-based football program six years ago at Victory & Praise Christian Academy in Crosby, Texas. Given his status as a veteran, he instituted a zero-tolerance policy for his players when it comes to protests of the National Anthem. “He told us that disrespect will not be tolerated,” said Ingram-Lewis after kneeling on Friday. “He told us to take off our uniform and leave it there.”
Two high school footballers in Texas have been kicked off their team for protesting during the national anthem.
Cedric Ingram-Lewis and his cousin Larry McCullough, who play for Two Victory and Praise Christian Academy in Crosby, were told to hand in their jerseys immediately after they protested ahead of the game Friday night.
Ingram-Lewis raised his fist during the anthem while McCullough took a knee. [Source: Daily Mail]
“That was my point of view,” Mitchem said. “Like I said, I’m a former Marine. That just doesn’t fly and they knew that. I don’t have any problem with those young men. We’ve had a good relationship. They chose to do that and they had to pay for the consequences.”
The coach is also content with not having the pair back on the team.
Mitchem said the pair left him no choice. He thought he had a deal with his players that no one would kneel. He said he supported the pair protesting, but wanted them to do it in other ways – kneeling after a touchdown in the end zone or writing and passing out a paper about the issues.
Mitchem believes the kneeling offends people and veterans who have fought for this country and takes away from the focus on the issues. [Source: Houston Chronicle]
Lewis’ mother Rhonda Brady fired back at her son’s coach, calling him a man with “no integrity.” She said, “Actions speak louder than words. So, for him to do what he did, that really spoke volumes, and I don’t want my kids or my nephew to be around a man with no integrity.”
“I’m definitely going to have a conversation because I don’t like the way that that was handled,” Brady added. “But I don’t want them back on the team. A man with integrity and morals and ethics and who truly lives by that wouldn’t have done anything like that.”
Brady’s remarks explain a lot about her son’s actions. Parents who would demean a veteran and member of the community who has given so much back are the ones responsible for raising the thugs-in-training who grow up to run from the police and spend the majority of their adult lives in prison. If Rhonda Brady doesn’t teach her son some respect — and quick — the fact that he was kicked off the high school football team will be the least of her worries.
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