COURTNEY MIRANDA; Social Media & Outreach Coordinator;

An obnoxious amount of speculative dust has been kicked up in reaction to the National Football League players’ kneeling or sitting during the national anthem. My humble, unworthy opinion: check your first amendment right before you condemn that of others.

This is, by far, one of the most peaceful protests the United States has seen in the past year. I would also argue one of the more respectful forms of protest as well—especially for such a powerful cause.

If I felt my rights, freedoms and liberties were being withheld from me, I certainly wouldn’t kneel—an action usually associated with respect— before the source of my frustrations. But perhaps that’s simply my dramatic nature. I think choosing to kneel rather than stand is still an action that displays respect for the flag and all that it represents, while peacefully protesting the cause.

Above all, as United States citizens we all have the freedom of speech and the right to petition. For all of those who so greatly defend their precious second amendment, I kindly ask you to holster your gun and grab some perspective, as no laws were broken here.

I think it’s unjust to ask NFL athletes to silence their opinions and beliefs because they put on a jersey. If you feel discriminated against, it won’t matter who you work for nor who’s watching.

It’s bold for the NFL to stand by their players—hopefully it’s with good intention. It’s very possible that the league simply feels trapped between the possible loss of athletes and Trump’s political fodder. They’ve promised to support some of the protested causes, and perhaps we will see them stay true to their word.

I admire the bravery of these players, and I hope our nation can see that if it takes famous names and faces to strike change, then the injustice has already gone too far. We have a duty as citizens to protect our own. Discrimination of any kind is wrong—it’s not a complex idea.

Share your thoughts