‘Take A Knee, My Ass (I Won’t Take A Knee)’ Is Neal McCoy’s Country Response To National Anthem Protests

There seems to be a misunderstanding in some circles about the message behind kneeling during the National Anthem: Opposers believe the act is a sign of disrespect towards the United States and the American flag, while Jay-Z recently summed up why National Anthem protestors do what they do: “It’s not about a flag, it’s about justice. That’s not a black or white thing, it’s a human issue.”

Country musician Neal McCoy, who had a pair of No. 1 US Country singles in the mid-’90s with “No Doubt About It” and “Wink,” absolutely doesn’t agree with Jay-Z, and he’s expressed as much in a new song he recently premiered, brazenly titled “Take A Knee, My Ass (I Won’t Take A Knee).”

He recently streamed a live performance of the song on Facebook (a studio version is also on iTunes), and it begins:

“I pledge allegiance to the flag
Of the United States of America.
I’ll stand and place my hand upon my heart
Every time her anthem plays.
When I see somebody on TV take their stand on bended knee,
Whether it’s on astroturf or grass,
I think of those whose freedom was not free,
And I say, ‘Take a knee, my ass.'”

McCoy (whose first name, by the way, is basically “kneel”) further explained the inspiration behind the song, saying it comes from “a guy that believes in our country”:

“I’ve been on 15 USO tours. I’ve entertained our troops in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq, and all over the world. So no, this is not a money grab. This is a guy that believes in our country, that does not like people kneeling, not standing with their hands over their hearts, for the Pledge of Allegiance and the National Anthem. That’s what I’m about.”

He also had some words about Colin Kaepernick being named “Citizen of the Year” by GQ, and he said that while he doesn’t necessarily disagree with the athlete’s message, he doesn’t care for the way he’s going about spreading it:

“Now, I didn’t read the article, I saw it when I was driving, I understand they’re probably going to say he’s done a lot for civil rights and everything, and maybe he has. Maybe whatever he was trying to do, with civil unrest, maybe African Americans being treated wrong, or not equally, and some of that’s right. Maybe that’s what he was trying to do. But, taking a knee during the National Anthem at a professional NFL game is not the way to do it.”

Listen to the studio version of the song above, and watch the live performance here.