The Jihad have been hired by an unknown agent to orchestrate a major terrorist attack.
Lady Liberty and Mayflower have been invited to sing the National Anthem at a championship game between the Metro Bay Minutemen and Gotham Knights.
One of the Gotham Knights has been kneeling during the anthem, making a spectacle and it’s expected that all of the Knights will be kneeling at this game.
Sparkler’s angry—“How could they disrespect the flag and soldiers and police like that?! Someone should force them to stand!”
Major Victory—“No, Sparkler. Dark as times might be, this is still America, and they still have freedom of speech, even if that speech is disrespectful.”
While the ladies prep to sing the Anthem, Sparkler is given a tour of the Minutemen locker-room; he notices one of the players looks like Rustam. He finds one of the Minutemen tied up and gagged in a janitor’s closet, his uniform missing. Sparkler passes the warning along to Major Victory and Silent Majority.
Major Victory chases Rustam, who is cut off by Silent Majority’s duplicates. Rustam reveals that Jaculi has swapped out the Knights’ kneepads for detonator triggers—when they kneel, it will set off bombs that have been placed in the stands.
Mayflower tries to stall for time, but Lady Liberty insists that the National Anthem must be sung. Abe Lincoln Carlisle has scanned the stadium with his supercomputer, and informs the team it’s a ruse—there are no detonators in the kneepads; the Jihad wanted to create the bad optic of the Force of July trying to stop the football players from kneeling.
As Lady Liberty sings the National anthem, Djinn appears on the jumbo-tron, declaring that nothing can stop the Jihad. The screens and lights shatter, causing pandemonium in the crowd. Silent Majority helps the police and soldiers who were being honored that night rescue the injured and evacuate the stadium.
Other members of Jihad appear on the field, as Major Victory, Sparkler, and Mayflower spring into action. Mayflower quips about being glad they didn’t opt for astroturf as she uses grass tendrils in the fight.
Through the fighting, Lady Liberty keeps singing the Star Spangled Banner. One by one, kneeling players stand, tears in their eyes. “Those cops and soldiers out there helping people–it’s time we helped them!”
Their plans foiled and completely outnumbered, the Jihad are captured.
Story ends with a peroration from Major Victory on the importance of the Anthem and respecting the sacrifices made for the country. “Just remember why you have free speech the next time you think you should kneel.”