The Paw Print

Taking a Knee: National Controversy

Mike McCarn

Mike McCarn

Frideriki Kolestos, Reporter

Since childhood, kids are taught to stand, face the flag, and show respect during the national anthem. In the NFL, standing for the pledge is formal, but a controversy concerning kneeling for the pledge is stated as disgraceful. In this case, the NFL players did not intend to show any disrespect for the country; it is their way of taking a knee in respect and gratitude for the U.S.A.

Colin Kaepernick is an American football quarterback who is currently a free agent. Kaepernick is a former San Francisco Forty-Niners player. As a free agent, after this controversial act occurred, he has now received very few looks or callbacks from teams. There have been reports of why this may be. “..some teams fear the backlash from fans after getting him. They think there might be protests or [President Donald] Trump will tweet about the team. I’d say that number is around 10 percent.

Then there’s another 10 percent that has a mix of those feelings.” according to BleacherReport.com. Through all of this, Kaepernick still fires back giving his reasoning and understanding of why he kneels during the pledge. “I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color,” said Kaepernick.

This was shot out after Trump, former president of the United States, decided to comment during a football game when he noticed Colin Kaepernick kneeling. “…total disrespect of our heritage. That’s a total disrespect for everything we stand for.” (Donald Trump) Although this act of kneeling during the pledge has happened in the past and there was no controversy.

Through all of this, this issue should not cost a statistically talented player his career due to a political statement. Kaepernick has a 90.7 passing rate, a comp of 126, and a rush of sixty nine, through the stats of NFL based on his past season in 2016. Recently many have been standing up for Kaepernick and began taking a knee during the pledge to stand up for him during this time.

Not only is this occurring in national leagues but also in highschool and college leagues. These small acts help link equality, taking kneeling as respect not a form of disrespect, and shows hope for the best to come.  

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