In a time when everyday patriotism seems to be on the decline, it’s amazing what a simple show of respect can do to enliven and revive the hearts and minds of a generation. Our latest wakeup call came not from a politician or national hero… but from Jamaican national and gold medal olympian, Usain Bolt.
During an interview with a reporter after a race, Bolt stopped the dialogue the instant he heard the faint strains of the US national anthem playing in the stadium.
It took a moment for the reporter to realize why Bolt stopped the interview process, but the moment she realized she followed suit. The gold medal athlete and reporter both turned to face the flag of a country not their own… and the moment was altogether eye opening.
As an American, I can attest to the fact that we are often less than grateful for the hard won freedoms we’ve been given. Usain Bolt reminded a nation of others like me how important mutual respect is, even in the spirit of competition.