BLM and the Representation of Kneeling During the National Anthem by Liliana

December 17, 2020


BLM and the Representation of Kneeling During the National Anthem

The action of kneeling during the national anthem began back in 2016 when Colin Kaepernick refused to stand during the star spangled banner in order to protest racial injustice and police brutality. “I am not looking for approval. I have to stand up for people that are oppressed.” He was later fired because of choosing to exercise his rights. Following this on October 2nd, 2016 the NFL decided to impose fines on players who kneeled. This put the issue of racial injustice behind closed doors and silenced the players more from expressing their rights. It led to only a few players kneeling during the national anthem but the coverage of racial injustice had finally been put out there more. 

The commotion of the cause died down, and got silenced more as time went on and was pushed into the background. However, on the 25th of May in 2020 an African American man by the name of George Floyd was murdered by a police officer who had knelt on his neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds. The policemen had come to arrest George Floyd for allegedly using a counterfeit bill and it ended with him dead on the street. After this, protests arose for Black Lives Matter and seeking justice for George Floyd and all those who had been killed by police brutality. In a way, it seemed as if the country had finally realized how big of a problem racism still is. Protests arose within 24 hours of the murder all around America, and the globe. People from every single state protested in the United States, along with places in Europe, Canada, Australia and even some in South America, Africa, the Middle East and Asia. 

Many groups throughout all of America began to support Black Lives Matter too. One of the bigger examples are sports teams. Not only the professional level sports teams, but college-level and even high school level sports teams. This then circles back to the choice of kneeling during the national anthem. So many sports teams have supported this cause. Either kneeling as a team during the national anthem, or not going out of the locker room as the national anthem plays. This has been the action of so many to not only show their support to Black Lives Matter but promote and enforce change for racial injustices.