A 10-year-old's decision to kneel during the pledge of allegiance at her school caused a stir, prompting conversations in her community about race and patriotism.
Skyla Madria was the topic of hot debate between Houston community activist Quanell X and Matt Patrick during a back-and-forth on Houston's Fox 26's segment "Face Off."
"Apparently, she believes that black Americans need a lot more to be done in this country," Patrick, the host of the show, said. "She's not willing to support the black Americans who have fought and died for this country."
He went on to question whether Madria spoke to her parents about her protest. He also mentioned that U.S. troops have made major sacrifices for her freedom.
X pointed out that Madria's father is himself a retired military veteran and that she and her mother had conversations about the decision.
As X began to explain the lesser-known racist verses of "The Star-Spangled Banner," which makes references to slaves and the "gloom of the grave," things got tense.
"What white people need to understand —," X began.
"Just white people?" Patrick interrupted.
"Yes, please, let me explain," X continued.
"Oh, here we go," Patrick said in exasperation, as X explained that Francis Scott Key, who wrote the anthem, owned slaves.
"What will happen to her, how her friends will respond, how the school will view her, how the school will view her is very negative," Patrick went on, perhaps trying to justify his criticism.
"America looked the same way at Rosa Parks when she refused to give up her seat to a white man on the bus, but history vindicated her," X responded.
Patrick also got an earful when he continued to argue that Madria's actions disrespected U.S. military veterans.
And so the spat went.
Perhaps at a loss for a reasonable response, Patrick ended up retorting to the age-old response, black people who are unhappy should "move to a different country."
That's when he got what he really deserved.
"Let the Indians decide who should go and I guarantee you black folks will stay and you'll all be on the first damn boat leaving here," X said, hitting the nail on the head.
NFL star Colin Kaepernick started almost a movement by sitting out the playing of "The Star-Spangled Banner" to make a statement about racial injustice in the United States.
"I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color," Kaepernick said. "To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way."