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November 29, 2022

 

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.


Trouble In The WNBA

There is a lot of controversy in the WNBA Finals this year. According to USA Today, the Los Angeles Sparks women’s basketball team refused to take part in the National Anthem as part of their protest. Before the game, the team would come out and warm up as any ordinary game then when it was time for the National Anthem the team went back into their locker room. Nothing was wrong with what they did, they were just showing how they felt about this whole little situation. Their opponents, the Minnesota Lynx stayed on the court and stood while the National Anthem was played. The way I feel about it is like it’s not even that serious people just want something to talk about. The Sparks had even received a letter from a Minnesota fan who thanked them for taking a stand and just not participate in it.

Photo by slgckgc


Would You Rather Stand Or Sit?

Do you stand or do you sit down when the national anthem comes on? Most don’t stand because the national anthem may not mean nothing to them it’s just words, they let come in one ear and go other the other. Some stand because they feel like that’s the right thing to do.The national anthem has a very important meaning. Most people don’t know that there is four stanzas to the national anthem. Why people don’t put they hand over they heart and stand when they hear the national anthem? When Francis Scott wrote it it was the first time that someone had put down in words there feelings about our country and the flag. Their was a lot of man that died just for fighting for our country so I feel like the least we could do is show them the respect that they deserve. Everyone has stood for the national anthem so why would you just stop standing now?If you already been standing for it don’t just stop now because we are having problems with our society. We all know that we have a lot of problems with our society today , but standing when the national anthem comes on is showing respect. If you think about it there is a lot of people that died fighting that war. We are always going to have problems in our society and every problem is not going to always get solved. If you go to a football game and when the national anthem comes on and you look around almost everybody stand up. Some people just stand because they feel like that’s the right thing to do.Some people don’t even stand up because it hurt for them to stand like elder people thats understanding. But if you just not standing because you following someone or is just lazy. Then thats a problem.


Be The Change You Want To See In The World

In an article by PROCON.org about the players who took a knee during the National Anthem, stated that the action was an ineffective and unprofessional way to promote a cause. “It’s not good to be a distraction to your team, nor is it good to use your team as your platform,” said the article. Furthermore, refusing to stand angers many and sows division in our country. Although many people may think it’s a sign of disrespect to the flag or to the veterans who’ve fought for our country, not standing for the National Anthem is actually an appropriate form of a peaceful protest! Kneeling, locking arms, and even sitting during the people have the right to freedom of opinion and expression. So why is it such a big issue?

By refusing to stand, the players were actually making a stand. You’re supposed to stand up for what you believe is right, and “sit” if it’s wrong, because you have the freedom to do so! If you do not believe in what the National Anthem stands for you should not be forced to participate. It’s supposed to represent respect to our soldiers who fought for our freedom, but are we free? No, we’re not. The National Anthem is like false advertisement; all talk, but nothing to back it up. It grants freedom and equality, but doesn’t guarantee it for us, in which it should. Yes, there will always be problems in the world, but those problems sometimes goes unnoticed when no one makes an effort to give those problems recognition. It’s a sign of power, pride, and confidence! Refusing to stand is a peaceful protest that has a possibility to make a big change in the world! It can make others with similar opinions get involved, and make them comfortable to voice how they feel too. It can form unity, and make people want to come together. If more people take a knee or protest, it will grab a lot of attention like it’s doing now! And those who are against this protest like Donald Trump, will only make the movement stronger. Don’t let what others say or think affect your beliefs, you could be the change you want to see in the world!

https://www.youthvoices.live/tag/nationalanthem/