Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center has deliberately misportrayed the kneeling protests by NFL players as disrespect for the flag, even though kneeling does, in fact, is an act of respect. So it's not surprising that the MRC is trying to drag "journalists" into its misleading narrative by rehashing a very old story. Take it away, Geoffrey Dickens:
Journalists are falling over themselves to praise NFL players taking a knee in protest during the National Anthem, but this isn’t the first time members of the liberal media have shown disrespect towards a symbol of national unity. Even as this country was recovering from the wounds of 9/11 some leftists in the press were agonizing over the proliferation of flag-waving.
First: Many of the people Dickens cites are not "journalists"; they are commentators like Katha Politt and Bill Moyers.
Second: Most of the examples Dickens cites are from the post-9/11 kerfuffle over whether people on TV should be forced to wear flag pins on their lapels. (No example is more recent than 2013, and there's a completely irrelevant one from 1991.) That means the conversation was not about patriotism but forced patriotism -- a difference Dickens doesn't seem to understand, or does and is pretending otherwise.
Certainly Dickens knows that forced patriotism is not real patriotism at all. That's why he (and the entire MRC) is trying to make this whole thing about the flag and not the issues the kneeling protest is actually about.