Student Athletes on taking a Knee

Mater+Dei+varsity+football+against+Oceanside
Mater Dei varsity football against Oceanside

Mater Dei varsity football against Oceanside

Amara Rivera

Amara Rivera

Mater Dei varsity football against Oceanside

Amara Rivera, Writer

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






Athletes all over the nation are using their platforms to stand up against injustice. This is happening in levels all the way from NFL to high school sports. This movement began to reach the public’s eye when Colin Kaepernick, former quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers, began sitting out during the national anthem in protest.  After receiving a letter from a United States veteran, Kaepernick began to kneel during the anthem to avoid appearing disrespectful. Despite his attempts, many Americans still feel that kneeling or any kind of protest during the anthem is disrespectful to the flag and our military.

His actions have influenced, many to kneel and now high school athletes are beginning to kneel in protest. High school administrations are beginning to go act on either banning players from kneeling or supporting the players decision to kneel.

In the region of San Diego there have been no reported incidents of kneeling in any of the fellow catholic schools despite the constant playing of kneeling on various media outlets. The Daily Aztec, SDSU’s Newspaper, questions whether or not the football team should kneel as a means of protest. Kemi Giwa, the author of the article, wrote “…There was a strong desire to make a statement and unite against an oppressive system that impacts more than 50% of players on the football team…” Despite the concerns shown in the article, no SDSU athletes have knelt in protest.

The California Interscholastic Federation is the agency which governs high school athletics. The Los Angeles CIF does have a bylaw which requires all students to stand for the anthem. Law 1317 states  “both teams shall be present on the field or court and shall stand respectfully until it has been completed.”

The local CIF bylaws have no official anthem policies, but Mr. George Milke, principal at Mater Dei Catholic, has received information from the CIF on the topic.

As of now Mater Dei has no official policy. “I think our young men are very respectful in all our sports. [As of right now], I think only football has the national anthem out of our fall sports, but I know during the winter, basketball has it. Our guys have been very respectful, and I am very proud of the young men here at Mater Dei.” 

Milke played multiple sports including football and baseball all throughout his high school career, then going on to play college baseball for University of Southern California, and finally playing for the Minor Leagues. While being interviewed, he said he has never seen anything like this happen before.

While no Crusaders have knelt in protest, students do seem to have strong opinions about the professional athletes who do.

Keith Wilkes is a sophomore on varsity football, and doesn’t feel strongly either way. Professional athletes who choose to kneel “have the right to do that. I don’t see it as disrespectful. They are doing it for a reason. Some people just don’t understand their reason.”

Jalyse Hanson, a junior softball and water polo athlete, when asked about kneeling during the national anthem says, “As an athlete in high school, I think coming from a military family, who have all served in various branches, I personally support it. I feel people misinterpret the players intentions when it comes to kneeling. When you ask the players, they say they aren’t pledging their full allegiance to the flag because there is so much injustice going on in the United States. Soldiers fight overseas for our rights and freedoms, just to come back to see racist riots, and oppression of the people that they fight for. That’s why I support it because these soldiers put their lives on the line and here we, with people of color still being oppressed, the white supremacist event in Charlottesville, our president Donald Trump. That is disrespect towards our flag.”

Whether for or against kneeling as a form of protest, the topic has attracted light and impacted athletes from all the nation.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Navigate Right
Navigate Left
  • Student Athletes on taking a Knee

    News

    Crusaders prepare for Color Walk

  • Student Athletes on taking a Knee

    A & E

    Miguel Moreno rises to stardom with new film “The Last Knock”

  • Student Athletes on taking a Knee

    Showcase

    Seniors struggle with College Stress

  • Student Athletes on taking a Knee

    Showcase

    Juniors head to their annual retreat

  • Student Athletes on taking a Knee

    Showcase

    Basketball looks forward to new season

  • Student Athletes on taking a Knee

    Showcase

    Crusaders decide between spiritual and physical hunger

  • Student Athletes on taking a Knee

    News

    Prospective Crusaders see what MDCHS offers

  • Student Athletes on taking a Knee

    News

    Hepatitis A grows as health concern

  • Student Athletes on taking a Knee

    A & E

    Mater Dei Drama Club Rings in the Holiday Season with “The Man Who Came to Dinner”

  • Student Athletes on taking a Knee

    Showcase

    AquaCrusaders season is for the record books

Student Athletes on taking a Knee