What the US seems to miss


Caleb Louks

The anchor from WOBN said, “Let’s stand for the pledge.”

   I stood proudly for the flag, my symbol of hope, bravery, and sacrifice. Beginning to recite the words, “I pledge allegiance to the flag-”. My sentence was cut short, astonished at what I noticed. Hoping to find someone as shocked as I was, my heart sank even further.

   My flag. My beacon of hope. My model of bravery. My symbol of sacrifice. I saw my classmates sitting while I stood proudly for my country.

   It’s not their flag.

   Although I wholeheartedly endorse peaceful protest, sitting during the pledge and kneeling during the national anthem is crossing the line.

   What exactly is the line?

   The line is disrespecting a country that doesn’t deserve to be disrespected.

   Rosa Parks, although she sat, she attacked the segregated buses.

   Martin Luther King Jr. (MLK) knelt in prayer to protest the arresting of people who marched around the courthouse for African-American voting rights.

   What’s the difference?

   Rosa Parks and MLK were attacking the source, and they never defiled their country. Rosa Parks attacked the segregated bus, and MLK went to the courthouse.

   MLK and Rosa Parks were the faces of the civil rights movement, and disrupting lives to get their point across was the only way to bring attention to their cause.

   What about Colin Kaepernick? Isn’t he disrupting lives?

   Dishonoring the government and people who sacrificed their lives for the country is not the same as disrupting lives.

   I can only assume Kaepernick’s intentions were correct, and what he protested was well justified. The only problem with Kaepernick’s method is he protested against the entire nation.

   He wanted to bring attention to these spitefully racist crimes to create change, but instead, he slandered the US as a nation.

   Many people, including myself, believe that no one deserves to die because of police brutality, but attacking our country is not the way to go about ending police brutality.

   The problem is not in the US government. The problem is with individuals who believe they are above the law. The problem is that people think they can get away with murder, and the courts allow them to.

   Why then are we protesting our entire country?

   Let’s take our rallies to the police stations where officers who cold-bloodedly murdered someone are walking free. Let’s take to the courtrooms where solid evidence is presented, but little action is taken.

   Don’t attack the entire country. Keep protests focused, and they will have a greater impact.

   We need to attack problems at the roots instead of attacking the integrity of our nation. That’s what will make a difference.