In an essay, Golden State Warriors star Stephen Curry had a simple plea: respect and celebrate veterans.
The heartfelt message was published in The Player’s Tribune on Saturday and called for more support of veterans while addressing the idea that the athletes who have peacefully protested were “disrespecting the military, our flag and our country.”
Curry says that he takes the remarks about athletes disrespecting the military “very, very seriously.”
“One of the beliefs that I hold most dear is how proud I am to be an American — and how incredibly thankful I am for our troops,” Curry penned. “I know how fortunate I am to live in this country, and to do what I do for a living, and to raise my daughters in peace and prosperity. But I also hear from plenty of people who don’t have it nearly as good as I do. Plenty of people who are genuinely struggling in this country. Especially our veterans.”
— Steve Kerr (@SteveKerr) November 11, 2017
He also discussed some of the conversations he has had with veterans. Each of those he’s spoken to have said they do not find the protests to be disrespectful to the military.
“And every single veteran I’ve spoken to, they’ve all said pretty much the exact same thing: That this conversation we’ve started to have in the world of sports … whether it’s been Colin kneeling, or entire NFL teams finding their own ways to show unity, or me saying that I didn’t want to go to the White House — it’s the opposite of disrespectful to them.
“A lot of them have said, that even if they don’t totally agree with every position of every person, this is exactly the thing that they fought to preserve: the freedom of every American to express our struggles, our fears, our frustrations, and our dreams for a more equal society.”
He ended the piece with a message that we should all be able to get behind.
“Let’s respect — let’s celebrate — our veterans, by having a conversation about the actual ways that we as civilians, as their fellow Americans they’ve fought to protect, can hold up our end of the bargain,” he writes.
“Let’s talk about the broken VA medical system, and traumatic brain injuries, and PTSD. But let’s also talk about homelessness, and unemployment, and mental health, and, yes, racial inequality.”