Sen. Dan Hegeman’s Capitol Report for the Week of Oct. 2, 2017

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There Are Better Ways

In light of all the controversy surrounding the National Football League and some of its players’ decision to kneel in protest during the national anthem, I wanted to use this week’s column to thank our veterans, active military and military families. There are many reasons why the United States of America is the best country in the world, but the single greatest is undoubtedly the men and women who have served.

Every minute of every hour of every day, our military is on the front lines, safeguarding our freedoms, borders and citizenry and allowing us to flourish and prosper in ways our forbearers could scarcely imagine. We are forever indebted to them for the tremendous opportunities and inalienable rights they afford us and protect — including, as demonstrated by those who’ve been kneeling in protest, the right to free speech.

That being said, there are better ways to send a message and inspire change than refusing to give our flag and national anthem, and thereby the men and women in uniform who’ve fought to defend the noble ideals for which they stand, the respect they deserve. So, in no uncertain terms, let me say that I believe everyone should stand during the national anthem, as a sign of respect for our country and every man and woman who has served, most especially those who made the ultimate sacrifice.

I am incredibly proud to be a citizen of the United States of America, and I have a deep love for our country and all its people. However, we must start doing a better job listening to one another. We aren’t always going to agree, but we still owe it to ourselves, and each other, to try and find a common ground — to stop focusing so much on what divides us and start focusing more on what unites us, as one people and one country.

As always, please feel free to call, email, or write with your ideas or concerns. My Capitol office number is (573) 751-1415, my email is and my mailing address is Room 332, State Capitol Building, Jefferson City, MO 65101.