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Football team responds to Kaepernick

Doria Diacogiannis, Editor-in-chief

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Varsity football quarterback and junior Ty Woodard, is behind San Francisco 49ers’ quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s kneeling during pre-game national anthems.

“He’s standing with his own color, and he’s going further than football, further than life,” the National Student Athlete of the Week said. “And he’s thinking more about the people and how African Americans are living these days,” Woodard said.

Kaepernick’s knee-drops started Aug. 26 and are intended to raise awareness for civil rights and the oppression of black Americans.

Teammates, fellow NFL players, professional women basketball players and high school athletes have followed suit.

Opponents say his gesture is disrespectful.

Despite the controversy his protest has caused, Kaepernick is taking advantage of his stage to “project his voice,” punter senior Casey Dreschler said.

Head coach Daron Reid supports Kaepernick’s controversial manner of protest.

“The action doesn’t feel too disrespectful to the flag or the country. It is bringing change, or at least conversation to foster change, rather than just him sitting out and not communicating,” Reid said.

Dreschler and Woodard agree that the NFL quarterback’s attempt to make a point is effective, especially since he, like other professional athletes, are looked up to as famous athletes and leaders.

“If a non-NFL player, someone from the street, stood up and did it, it wouldn’t count,” Woodard said. “But if Colin Kaepernick, Cam Newton or any NFL player is doing it, something is really serious.”

Although there has not been much reaction to Kaepernick’s movement amongst the football teams here, other high schools have taken action, according to ublished reports. But Lions left tackle Gianluca Parrotta still takes issue.

“This is high school football, and you don’t have the national stage that Colin Kaepernick has,” Parrotta said. “You’re not drawing eyes like that.”

But he understands the principle.

“I agree with what they’re fighting for,” Parrotta said. “Black Lives Matter, I’m 100 percent with them. I just don’t agree with the way they’re doing it. Kneeling during our anthem is pretty disrespectful.”

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