A Time To Speak

This past weekend, I took it upon myself to travel to Washington D.C. to visit the National Museum of African American History and Culture, as they celebrated their first anniversary. I picked this weekend’s voyage because I needed to see first hand what my ancestors endured so I could speak to the root of the issue that is dividing our nation at this very moment.

As some of you may know, I belong to a family that saw generation after generation serving in our country’s various military branches. So it goes without saying that I truly respect and appreciate the many who have served our country. I don’t merely state this gratitude. I’ve also matched my vocal support for the men and women of our armed services by partnering with leaders in Las Vegas to grow Veterans Village, a complex that houses over 350 veterans and their family members. It gives these heroes that would otherwise be homeless a place to find shelter.

But with all that being said, I would be remiss if I stayed silent and did not join my brothers in solitude, standing up against the forces who choose to ignore the cry to end police brutality, the systemic oppression against people of color and the criminal justice system.

The misconception that is being spread, that we as athletes should stay silent in itself is offensive. Throughout the many black and brown communities in the U.S., we only have our athletes and entertainers as a rule of measure, to find inspiration and motivation to keep the faith, letting our neighbors, friends and family know that they’re not alone in their pursuit of the American dream.

So, as only as I know to do being a former running back, I stand with my new quarterback Colin Kaepernick and will pick up the blitz against hate as he leads us with his bold stance against such injustices.

By |2017-09-25T16:09:27+00:00September 25th, 2017|Blog, News|13 Comments

13 Comments

  1. Cesar Pellicer September 25, 2017 at 5:43 pm - Reply

    You have all my respect.
    Tienes todonmi respeto.
    I am with you
    Estoy contigo.

  2. Kim September 25, 2017 at 5:49 pm - Reply

    Please do not disrespect yourself by including your eloquent words with that of the entertainment industry that only speak up to hear their own voices and get their pictures shown. I only hope is that the men taking a knee are praying for peace.

  3. Robert September 25, 2017 at 6:18 pm - Reply

    Jackson I don’t agree with how it’s being protested. I think it’s selfish to put the men who served on the disrespect cross. Saying that it is peaceful and this is America freedom of peaceful speech and protest. I think in you missed it tho . It’s supposed to be about inequity as a whole not race. Lets not forget that not one work boot was looted during the huricaines. Whites need to change Blacks need to change and Mexicans need to change. I only mention the 3 because , they are the only ones who I have 24 7 relations with. We all American races need to bring back common since.

  4. W. Weaherspoon September 26, 2017 at 12:59 am - Reply

    Thank you Steven. Why are our many Veterans homeless and jobless? Those who are so against the kneeling protest should chanel their energy toward supporting our veterans. This is where the dishonor festers.

  5. mark September 26, 2017 at 5:09 am - Reply

    correct, good call

  6. Patti Balderson September 26, 2017 at 4:44 pm - Reply

    There is a time and a place to protest whatever wrongs and injustices that have been inflicted on whatever race you are. tt is heartbreaking to watch anyone disrespect our Flag and our National Anthem, that so many have fought for and given their lives to protect our rights and our freedoms. This country, though it is far from perfect has given us a multitude of opportunities to be whatever we want to be, given us the freedom to pursue our dreams and live along side with our brothers and sisters of all colors and walks of life. We as a country have overcome many obstacles and injustices, together, we can overcome more, but, divided we will fall. There are good, loving people all around, there are also people that are horrible, to say the least. There are good cops and bad cops. I believe All Lives Matter and pray that the people of this country can come together in unity instead of divisity. From the time you stepped on the Ram’s turf, you were one of my favorite players! You’ve always been a stand up guy,. I grew up in Henderson and went to Basic High School. My Dad still lives in Henderson and my Mom still lives in Vegas. My Dad was a teacher and my Mom was a principal. I love Southern Nevada, it will always be home to me. Thank you for giving your time to worthy causes in the Vegas community. I will not kneel and disrespect the country that has given me the freedom to live as I choose. Thanks for listening.

  7. James Howard Youngblood September 27, 2017 at 2:55 am - Reply

    Mr. Jackson, I respect your views and disagree with our president on calling for the players to be fired. As a white male, I will never experience the issues that blacks face. That being said, allow me to say that many feel this protest is an insult. Not the fact that you are protesting, but how. My family among them. I completely accept the way the Cowboys chose to protest this week. That was truly a way to get everyone’s attention and yet, not insult their fans. You see, players have the right to do what they are doing and, as a teacher I tell my students this. But, when you are trying to get people who maybe don’t see things your way to sit down and have a discussion, insulting them is not the way to do so. The players want people to listen about social injustice, but they are not listening themselves to millions of their fans. We support their right to protest. We do not support how they have chosen to protest. You are a respected man, use your influence to help them find a better way of protesting that will actually lead to results. This protest will only further divide us if it continues. I have always been one of your biggest fans. My cousin Jack played for the Rams for many, many years. I support you, but ask that you please work on a more productive way.

  8. Raymond Brooks September 27, 2017 at 4:54 pm - Reply

    Very eloquent. Those who would say kneeling is disrespectful are projecting their personal bias and not respecting the voice of these Americans. Invoking All Lives Matter don’t understand the false equivalency of that statement. Black Lives Matter addresses the systemic and historical suppression of people of color, something white people have not had to suffer under. It is time for a real open discussion on how to make women, people of color, muslims and others equal across all facets of their lives. I applaud your stance.

  9. Tim Sanderson September 27, 2017 at 9:58 pm - Reply

    Now, if only somebody could explain how taking a knee during the National Anthem is doing anything about this social injustice. How does taking a knee for 90-120 seconds do anything to help? It would appear that all it is doing is upsetting fans. In other words, I don’t think this protest is doing what you think it is doing.

    You might as well just stand in a Walmart parking holding a pink tulip for 2 minutes each week and then tell people you are doing something about a social injustice.

  10. Gene Newburgh September 28, 2017 at 12:11 am - Reply

    Thank you for your eloquent explanation of support for all. .A previous comment by a teacher states it is not respectful, and I have to politely disagree. Obviously, Collin’s brave, non-destructive action got attention for many for the first time, to cause such a national discussion, fanned by Trump’s emotional reaction. You have shown more support for the flag, the country and veterans especially, than probably all of your responders collectively, so your decision to speak up is valued, needs to be heard; you have credibility.. You have always shown respect for everyone and you have put your words into action with your fiscal and emotional support of veterans. Once again, you amaze me, -as you have done since your first month at OSU- with your ability to vocalize the importance of seeing all sides of an issue and respectfully explaining it to others who may jump to emotional conclusions and not listen to another’s opinion. This university teacher,advisor adds, “Well said, Steven! Thank you!” Hope this finds you well!!! PS Miss your dreads… 🙂

  11. Sean Gallagher September 28, 2017 at 9:16 am - Reply

    Steven,

    I’ve admired your talents for many years, ever since you played for my beloved Beavers, and it makes me happy to see you kneel with your brothers of the pigskin in support of the idea that our country still has much growing to do.

  12. Mary Knight September 28, 2017 at 10:17 am - Reply

    Mr. Jackson…I have followed your career for many years,, I don’t know how or why you got my attention so long ago, other than the fact that I have always been a Ram fan. My favorite foootballl players are the ones I see that have integrity, spirit, love of the game, and never give up attitude. You are all of that.
    I am a 73 year old grandmother of 22 and mother of 8…I live and breathe football, so much so that my kids know better than to call me on Sunday.
    That is why, the fact that I love football, is why I feel so very strongly that these protests do not belong on the field. I want to start the game off by talking about plays, defense, offense, coaches, my fantasy teams..not looking to see who is and who is not taking a knee so the discourse for the entire 3 hours is about that. I tune in to spend time taking me away from my problems…..I have the rest of the week to focus on issues.
    I just watched Hidden Figures for the 4th time and also watched The Help last night. I get sick to my stomach when I see how human beings treated each other. I find it so hard for someone to see another human being as a useless, meaningless piece of trash. As a christian woman, I really cannot get past the fact that we really treated peoople like this.
    That being said, I would be the first to stand up for equality, rights of all individuals, and certainly the right to protest against injustices.
    The football field is not the place…I would bet most of those players taking a knee couldn”t tell you the years of World War 1 or 2, the Korean War or the Vietnam War. Bottom line here is what we think the flag stands for..The players taking a knee only see the bad in this country, while those standing see the good. You, Mr. Jackson, having worked with Vets are above this. I don’t know about all VA hospitals, but the one in Los Angeles has a sign in view as you enter. It says “The price of YOUR freedom is visible here”. Of course, this refers to all the injured and sick vets, the ones you pass in wheelchairs that are missing limbs..
    Again, Steven, I wish you would rethink your stance on this on gameday…How can you support a quarterback that wears socks that says Kill the Pigs..You are above all this, or so I thought.
    This next fact does not really factor in but it is there nonetheless….
    These players are the privileged few who get to do what they love every day, make an enormous amount of money, read their names in the newspapers, etc….I would bet the players who tried out and didn’t make the team would trade attitudes in a heartbeat. I live on a minimum social security, can’t even afford a hot dog or a parking spot at a game, will never be able to take my grandkids to a game, so yes there is an irony there.
    I dare say the longer this goes on, the game of football will be destroyed, and people might even forget about it and go about their Sundays doing other things. That could really happen.
    I miss watching you play, but would still like to hear your name being used for the good of the game..not what you are doing now.
    Mary

  13. sarah wammack April 18, 2018 at 10:50 am - Reply

    Steven

    You and I went to school together. I agree with your words. I have three young songs all playing sports and I’m glad to say they don’t see color, race, or disabilities. Different then when we grew up but it must mean something. I think equality is important and more people need to stand up for it .

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