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The Students’ Opinions on #Takeaknee

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The Students’ Opinions on #Takeaknee

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One hashtag, #takeaknee, has been spreading across the United States rapidly, dividing the nation on their opinions on the topic. The origin of #takeaknee was when NFL player, Colin Kaepernick, began to kneel during the singing of the national anthem at the beginning of games, as a way to protest racism and police brutality in America. His movement has since grown, striking controversy and causing strong opposition, and support alike, to arise. Many NFL players have joined Kaepernick in his symbol of protest, while others in the league see his actions as disrespectful and are enraged at his behavior as a professional football player. One of the individuals who is against Kaepernick’s actions is President Donald Trump, who is quoted as saying “Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a bitch off the field right now. Out! He’s fired!'” (Donald Trump, 2017)

I decided to ask several students in LOLHS about their opinions on #takeaknee to see what their views were.

Riley Fruth, a ninth grader, commented that “Honestly, I think it’s someone else saying what they believe and our country is free and they believe that their freedom of speech is okay.”

Another tenth grade student confesses that they can see both sides of the argument, saying, “It is freedom of speech. But I understand why it could come across as disrespectful to some people.”

Julia Reynolds, a junior, says that she “couldn’t care less.” “It gets attention to [police brutality].”

I was surprised at the number of people who supported #takeaknee, as I expected more of a diverse set of answers, as there are many known Trump supporters here in LOLHS, but even more surprising was that many people who I asked did not know what #takeaknee was. There were also the few that refused to respond, which is very understandable in this political climate, but some students just stared at me blankly when I asked the question, clearly uncomfortable. #Takeaknee is a controversial subject, yes, but whether you find the act of silent protest as disrespectful or brave, the media attention has brought the issues of racism and police brutality to light even more than they were before and the entire situation speaks volumes about the United States.

 

Sources:

“Donald Trump makes ‘taking a knee’ his top issue.” The Washington Times, The Washington Times, 28 Sept. 2017, www.washingtontimes.com/news/2017/sep/28/donald-trump-makes-taking-a-knee-his-top-issue/. Accessed 2 Oct. 2017.

Pesca, Mike. “Mike Pesca: What Does It Mean To Take A Knee?” Mike Pesca: What Does It Mean To Take A Knee? | Only A Game, 16 Sept. 2017, www.wbur.org/onlyagame/2016/09/16/mike-pesca-kaepernick-national-anthem. Accessed 2 Oct. 2017.

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The Students’ Opinions on #Takeaknee