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Michiana veterans respond to NFL kneeling controversy

MISHAWAKA, Ind.— Wednesday morning, after NFL officials announced they will not force players to stand President Trump responded, calling the lack of action “total disrespect for our great country!”

Army veteran Jim Metherd says he agrees with President Trump and in his opinion, players should be forced to stand.

“It’s tough for me because being combat veteran, putting my life on the line as many others did to defend our flag and our way of life, we truly understand their position in not standing and kneeling with it, but it’s hard for us,” says Metherd.

The handful of veterans we heard from say they wouldn’t kneel but understand the meaning behind it.

“We all fought for their freedom and that includes their freedom to kneel. If it were me, I wouldn’t personally do that and its not what my family does but that’s their freedom and that’s why we went to fight for it,” says Andrew Chilafoe, an Army veteran.

Marine Paul Patillo sees both sides.

“I come from a family who was never really in the military so I never really had a full understanding until I was in the US Marine Corps of how much the flag really meant to me,” says Patilo.

Patillo says he fought for your freedom to kneel or to stand, but, believes many civilians don’t know the full importance of the flag.

“Until you’re willing to give your life for this country and some guy to the right and left of you somebody you didn’t grow up with somebody you never met before, its really hard to understand,” says Patillo.

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