A petition has gone viral to remove a statue in Baltimore, Maryland. However, it’s not a statue that pays tribute to Confederate leaders or soldiers — it’s a statue of former Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis.
The petition on Change.org has gained close to 70,000 signatures for the statue of the future Hall of Fame linebacker to be removed from M&T Bank Stadium because he participated in the NFL protests during the national anthem.
“I want the Ray Lewis statue at Ravens Stadium removed because of his refusal to stand during the National Anthem,” Eric Moniodis, who started the petition, wrote in the petition’s description. “That song honors our country and our veterans who fought for it. To kneel during it is disrespectful, regardless of what you are protesting. I will not stand for that kind of disrespect towards our country, especially from a legend such as Ray Lewis. You stand for the National Anthem as a salute to those who can’t stand because they fought for this land.”
The petition didn’t comment on whether or not Lewis’ alleged disloyalty to America was worse than the disloyalty of the Confederacy.
Lewis defended himself saying he wasn’t actually protesting the national anthem, the military, or even ending police brutality and reforming the criminal justice system.
“I didn’t drop on one knee in order to protest,” Lewis said. “I dropped on two knees — both knees — so I can simply honor God in the midst of chaos.”
According to the Baltimore Sun, additional security has been added around the statue to prevent anyone from taking matters into their own hands and removing it themselves.
Following the violence that took place in Charlottesville in August, there was a massive wave of liberals who wanted to tear down statues of Confederate leaders and generals, as well as the founding fathers like George Washington and Thomas Jefferson for being slave owners.
While liberals don’t view Ray Lewis with as high esteem as Colin Kaepernick, he’s certainly being treated by conservatives that way.