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For the third consecutive year, the New York Knicks visited the United States Military Academy during the team's training camp in West Point, New York.

New Knicks center Joakim Noah, however, didn't join his teammates at the academy because of his strong stance against war and gun violence.

"It’s hard for me a little bit — I have a lot of respect for the kids here fighting — but it’s hard for me to understand why we go to war and why kids have to kill kids all around the world,’’ Noah said, according to the New York Post. “I have mixed feelings about being here. I’m very proud of this country. I love America. I don’t understand kids killing kids around the world."

Knicks head coach Jeff Hornacek gave Noah permission to skip the function, which included dinner with West Point cadets and a speech from a retired colonel.

“It’s his right,’’ Hornacek said. “We want him part of the team group. He just didn’t feel comfortable. We’re not going to pressure him into doing that. We had a speaker who I thought was fantastic. I told him maybe I can get him a copy of the speech, so he can hear some of it. It’s his right. That’s fine."

“With all his stuff he does against gun violence, it’s plenty fine with us.’’

Let us know what you think about Noah's decision in the comments.

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