To Stand or to Kneel

By Amber Murphy

Recently, there has been a lot of controversy in the NFL regarding players kneeling during the national anthem. Of course, many people feel very strongly about this topic. Some believe that it is the right of the players to protest on a very important issue. Others see it as a sign of disrespect toward our flag and our country.Players kneeling during the national anthem originated out of protest against police brutality and minority equality. Players in the NFL, and of course many other Americans, believe that these are serious issues that need to be addressed. They want their voice heard, and this is how they are bringing attention to the issue.Fred Thomas, head football coach, said, “Personally I always stand up for the flag, but this is a free country.”Still, many people may not agree. To many, this is a very sensitive issue, and sometimes it can be hard to be open-minded about other people’s views. For example, someone from a military background may see this protest as a sign of disrespect toward the military and everything the flag stands for. However, on the flip side of that, some may argue that the military fights for the right of others to choose to stand or kneel.Tanaja Davis, junior criminal justice major, said the flag can represent different things to different people based on their backgrounds.“A white American might feel differently about the United States flag then a Native American does, or a Mexican American whose land was annexed by the United States and was told this is ours now,” said Davis. “Or, an African American who was told up until fairly recently that you’re not a citizen, you’re just in this country as property, and so a lot of people of color have a hard time seeing that flag as representing the same thing as other people to whom it’s Panel on NFL Players Protest at Malone University, Photo by Annie Kadlecek Global ConnectivityBy Cathy WeyandSee Global Connectivity, Page 2Malone has changed Wi-Fi networks to Eduroam, an international standard that makes it possible to go to another Eduroam campus and immediately have Wi-Fi connection. Staff can also access all of their network files, whether connected to Wi-Fi or not. “We’re excited that we have [Eduroam] and everybody that I have talked to, when we talk about the benefits of Eduroam, have been excited about it,” Donald Swank, IT client services coordinator, said.“What we found out in our research is that there is nothing wrong with our Wi-Fi. It was almost all, with few exceptions, Samsung Android devices. The newer ones had a hardware issue, and that would have been an update that would have been provided by their provider. As far as we can tell, it was fixed by the provider,” said Swank. Right now there is testing for another future benefit of Wi-Fi connection , Photo by Annie Kadlecek always represented freedom, liberty, and justice.”“I think that people have the right to express themselves,” said Coach Thomas, “I think one of the greatest things in this country is that you have a right to express yourself.”It is true that we as Americans are protected under the Constitution to be able to protest and speak their minds. Under the First Amendment, Americans are given the freedom of speech, religion, and right to assemble in protest of injustice. However, many people are upset with how the NFL players utilized this privilege.While many understand what the protest is about, they wish the flag and national anthem wouldn’t be involved.Matthew Ramsey,junior middle childhood education major, said, “I agree with it, but I think that there’s a time and a place. There’s different ways to solve what’s going on.”Many people seem to agree that it isn’t the message itself that is offensive. It is when the players are choosing to send the message.“It’s not unheard of for teams to link arms in protest,” said Ramsey, “but I think that taking a knee during the national anthem is disrespectful in a way.”However, in contrast, many people believe that when it comes to institutional racism, the right time to protest is now. It should make Christians uncomfortable that fellow brothers and sisters in Christ are experiencing injustice.“It’s protesting against institutional racism and police brutality. We have to realize that this isn’t about a single cop or a single person,” said Davis. “It’s about a system that’s targeted a lot of people of color. We need to recognize the injustices embedded in our system and we need to try and combat that in some way.”With so many differing views, it is easy to become frustrated by the lack of clarity on the subject. However, part of what makes America great is the fact that people can discuss, argue, and disagree freely. It is important to have these conversations and figure out what accurately reflects what it means to be an American and a person of faith.

 

LXIII Issue No. 3

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s