Sitting or standing: it’s honestly your call

A big issue circulating in America is whether it is disrespectful to sit during the national anthem, or if that is a freedom that Americans have.

Colin Kaepernick, football player for the San Francisco 49ers, decided to sit on the bench during the national anthem in a preseason game. At first glance, the gesture seems very disrespectful. However, Kaepernick said that he is protesting the oppression of African Americans and other minorities who do not have a voice.

Kaepernick reiterates that he is not doing it out of disrespect of the military men and women. He is just trying to shed some light on serious social issues and hoping that a change will come.

It is your right to stand or sit during the national anthem, and there are no set rules on whether or not you stand for the national anthem. We have the freedom to stand, or sit in this case, for our beliefs. It’s stupid to get angry at whether you stand or sit during the anthem because we set it as a tradition.

Standing for the national anthem is just a symbol of respect, almost like wearing a wedding band. However, Kaepernick has stated a plethora of times that he is kneeling to give a voice to the people who feel oppressed by the flag, not out of disrespect for the military men and women. He is peacefully protesting for the people of color and for anyone who feels like his or her rights have been taken away or quenched because of color or sexual preference.  

Nobody said standing had to represent the country. Is it stupid for him not to stand? Yes. He knows this will create drama and will only bring more harm than good. Are there other ways to make his voice heard? Yes. Maybe at a conference after a game, he could say something. He should hear the opinion of the people and see which option is best. However, it is not un-American to sit during the anthem, because it is our right.

Everyone says to exercise freedom, but once someone takes action on their freedom, then everyone jumps on the bandwagon to crucify the person. To a majority of people, the only opinion that matters is the patriotic opinion. Taking action on your freedom should not be considered a sin.

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