So here is the controversy from last night that has spilled over into Saturday.
During the national anthem, Colin Kaepernick did not stand while the rest of his team did. Kaepernick explained that he couldn’t stand for the national anthem and support a country who oppresses black people and minorities. As you can see above, the NFL has responded.
And there we have two sides of this situation. One side believes that Kaepernick has the right to voice his feelings in this way and it’s well within his constitutional rights. Others believe that it’s disrespectful to what the flag and all those who have served our country mean to the nation.
And I think both sides are right.
A lot of this is fueled because of Kaepernick’s play on the field. But if we ignore that and just look at the act itself, we can see how both sides provide really good points.
Kaepernick’s point of view is serious — at least it appears serious to him. Look at our country in the past few years and you have seen so much. It is clear that this country still struggling with racism, classism and a lot of tough things. It’s real. And with the platform as an athlete, Kaepernick felt that this was a way to express his disapproval of all of it. And knowing that as an American, he has the right to express that. He isn’t obligated to stand. What he did wasn’t wrong.
But should he have done it? The other side argues that it is disrespectful. The country may not be perfect, but those in the armed forces fighting for everyone’s freedom deserves our respect. That’s why we stand during the anthem. This is our way of expressing unity for America, by standing during the anthem. And plus, this was not the place or time to do this.
And I agree with both sides of the argument. And depending on whose side you are on, you may think the other side is wrong. You can’t use the argument that he is successful so he doesn’t understand oppression. Whether or not that is the case, he sees the struggle in America and doesn’t want to stay quiet.
So was it the right thing for him to do? If you believe in the platform he has and his rights, then you really couldn’t argue what he did or really what his action represents.
But on the other hand, was it the right place and time to do this? After all, he didn’t stand for the national anthem, which symbolizes the sacrifice and freedom of this country.
Yet, it’s that exact freedom that allows Kaepernick to make such a stand (no pun intended).
Who’s right? I see that both sides have valid points, which makes this such a hot topic. It just depends on whose side you are on.