Last weekend’s controversy over athletes taking a knee during the national anthem is a clear example of the difference between taking offense and being given offense.

The players taking a knee have explained their gesture as a call for America to be more truly a nation of liberty and justice for all. They want to make America even greater. There's no disrespect in that intention, unless one believes in a nation of special privilege.

There's no disrespect in the gesture itself, either. In church we call taking a knee genuflecting. It’s a posture of worship: that is, of the very greatest respect.

David W. Cole, Baraboo