The decision of football player Colin Kaepernick to not stand for the national anthem is his choice [“On opposite sides,” Sports, Aug. 31], but his reasoning brings into question his understanding of what the anthem and flag symbolize.

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The United States is an imperfect country in an imperfect world, but in the course of history, no nation on Earth has been more instrumental in bringing liberty and human dignity to the world. That goodness is deserving of respect. It’s when standing in unity for the anthem that Kaepernick would demonstrate his stand against those who would oppress us and deny us our freedoms.

Michael Fitzpatrick, Massapequa Park