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Op-Ed: And to the Republic for Which it Kneels

This past Sunday, millions of Americans gathered around their TVs to watch football as usual, but what they witnessed was something unprecedented in sports. Hundreds of coaches and players decided to peacefully protest our national anthem by kneeling or staying in the locker room. Although Colin Kaepernick started this trend in protest of police brutality over a year ago, the protests have now taken on a new meaning. Many players are protesting our President’s recent comments regarding athletes and sports in general.

This is wrong. Whether or not a person agrees with the President is their own opinion, but to protest our country and offend and disrespect millions of US Veterans and their families is wrong. This is not to say what they are doing isn’t legal, it just isn’t right. Protest is supposed to inspire change, and protest of a worthy cause, like police brutality, is always good. But the protests now, however, are about an issue that is unchangeable. My suggestion to these athletes is to use other platforms available to them (which is easy because they’re constantly in the spotlight) to express the problems they have with our country. They can very easily get their point across in a more respectful manner.

Hebrew Academy students are currently learning how to express opinions in a respectful manner as well.Wednesday’s Debate Midrash, the second of the year, addressed the topic of kneeling for the anthem. The students expressed a variety of viewpoints but did it in an inoffensive way.

Although I don’t agree with the protests, that’s part of the beauty of our country. These players have the right to protest in any way shape or form. Hopefully, in the future they can do it more respectfully and inspire positive change in our country.

By: Caleb Katz (12th Grade)

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