Why sitting is not the way to take a stand

Aidan Segal, Sports Editor


It did not take much for something as simple as a football game, a national pastime, to divide the country. Colin Kaepernick made a decision to protest the national anthem by sitting as everyone else stood in respect for the flag. Americans are well aware of what is going on in the NFL; football fans or not. The trend has continued throughout the early weeks of the season, thus forcing some Americans to choose sides.

This mess all started in the preseason as the San Francisco 49ers took on the Green Bay Packers. Back-up quarterback, Colin Kaepernick decided that he felt obligated to sit during the national anthem due to his belief that the flag represents oppressing “black people and people of color”.

This gesture did not go unnoticed as social media erupted. And this was just the beginning.

Some looked at Kaepernick as a hero and some looked at him as a villain in the NFL. However, the 28-year old out of the University of Nevada, gained a lot of support from a good amount of football players. Sitting, kneeling, and the more recent “raised fist” representing black power are now seen on the sidelines.  Even on September 11th, four players from the Miami Dolphins decided that their agenda was bigger than the 2,977 victims who were killed 15 years ago. And again, this is only the beginning.

No doubt that there is a definite problem with the relations between cops and the African-American community. Certain events have perpetuated this even more. There are riots in Charlotte, NC right now due to a shooting of a black male. This does not mean that every cop is a racist. This does not mean that every cop is a murderer.

The “Black Lives Matter” movement has even furthered the controversy. Chants of “What do we want? DEAD COPS! When do we want it? NOW!” have occurred around the country. This message does not represent an entire race, just like cops should not be generalized as killers.

So now it all circles back to Colin Kaepernick. He has every right to protest the national anthem. No one is forcing him to stand. But, football is an escape for people. Fans don’t want the surrounding controversy and the politics of the game. If anything football is what bring people together, no matter your race, religion, age, gender, or even the team you support, we are all Americans in the end. I think a classic game of football is all we need.

San Francisco 49ers Eric Reid (35) and Colin Kaepernick (7) take a knee during the National Anthem prior to their season opener against the Los Angeles Rams during an NFL football game Monday, Sept. 12, 2016, in Santa Clara, CA. The Niners won 28-0. (Daniel Gluskoter/AP Images for Panini) ORG XMIT: DGCA101