Brian Munoz New York

Do you agree with racial inequality?

People are entitled to not stand for the national anthem as a peaceful, effective protest against racial inequality and police brutality.

Do you agree with racial inequality?


Dear Future President,

This controversial argument of police brutality has been impacting people across the nation for the past few years. Many athletes have been refusing or staying neutral on this argument. People have been protesting police brutality by not standing for the national anthem. The people that disagree or stayed neutral have been showing distaste for those who have dishonored the flag and those who have served the nation. Many students of different high schools are being inspired by their idols of different sports in this case football refusing to stand for the national anthem and conveying that they support Kaepernick's point of view even if they don't get as much attention as a celebrity, they still feel oppressed when they see their people being killed(1). Kaepernick spoke these words, his protest has caught fire across the country, with NFL players from Miami to Seattle to Boston showing solidarity by kneeling or raising their fists in the air during the song. Meanwhile, players from other sports have joined in, with soccer star Megan Rapinoe kneeling during the national anthem, telling American Soccer Now that the gesture was “a little nod to Kaepernick and everything that he's standing for right now”(1). People are entitled to not stand for the national anthem as a peaceful, effective protest against racial inequality and police brutality.

In addition, many people have been affected by police brutality where they get to a point that the national anthems lyrics doesn’t seem like it includes freedom for people with different skin color. According to Brandon Marshall an NFL player stated that, “I'm against social injustice. I'm not against the military or police or America at all. I'm against social injustice and I feel like this was the right thing to do”(2). This demonstrates that many people feel oppressed by the action the authorities has taken, meaning they're not against America. Many other people like President Barack Obama have stayed neutral but said, “ As a general matter, when it comes to the flag and national anthem and the meaning that holds for our men and women in uniform and those who fought for us, that is a tough thing for them to get past.

I don't doubt his sincerity. I think he cares about some real, legitimate issues that have to be talked about and if nothing else, what he's done is generate more conversation around some topics that need to be talked about.

You've heard me talk about - in the past - the need for us to have an act of citizenry.

Sometimes that's messy and controversial and it gets people angry and frustrated, but I'd rather have young people who are engaged in the argument and trying to think through how they can be part of our democratic process than people who are sitting on the sidelines”(2). This illustrates that sometimes it’s a good idea to get messy when it comes to a controversy not everyone is going to agree with you but you should use your right of expression.

Also, Kaepernick stated in one interview he had about why he has refused to stand for the national anthem, “I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color”(1). This portraits that Kaepernick isn’t going to show prideness when it comes to a nation that oppresses people just because of the way they look. Kaepernick also said, he will risk anything to unmask whoever is behind this crime of punishing people just because of the way they look. He also said that this decision he made of pledge refusal is bigger than staying in the NFL.This could seem a bit selfish from him but he wants everyone to be treated equally(2).

However, many people have been showing distaste for people like Colin Kaepernick because they feel like he has dishonored the flag and the people who have served for the nation. Drew Brees a quarterback for New Orleans stated, he supports Kaepernick's message but disagrees with the delivery: "[I]t's an oxymoron that you're sitting down, disrespecting that flag that has given you the freedom to speak out." [18] This conveys that Drew Brees feels oppressed too but he wouldn’t disrespect the flag in such way. Social media has been going crazy opposing this argument they feel disrespected and been burning a large amount of football jerseys with the names of the NFL players that been refusing to stand for the national anthem. A coach from Clemson University stated, "I don't think it's good to be a distraction to your team. I don't think it's good to use your team as the platform"[4]. This shows that many people disagree because they feel disrespected by not standing to the national anthem. Malcolm Jenkins is another person who disagrees with police brutality but he doesn’t want to take a side because his grandfather served for the nation and Jenkins wouldn’t want to be against a whole nation.

This argument has caught many people's attentions and has inspired many people from high school students to celebrities to create an effective peaceful protest. Megan Rapinoe is another celebrity to support Kaepernick on this controversy. Wilson Woodrow a high school coach said, “I am well aware of the third verse of the national anthem which is not usually sung, and I know that the words of the song were not originally meant to include people like me"(2). This depicts that people with different color skin feel disrespected when the national anthem is sung because they feel that it does not include prideness when referring to african americans.

To sum up, this topic has been going on for a long time many people have been getting killed by the authorities and whoever is behind this hasn't been unmasked. Young high school students are feeling assaulted just by the way they look. Many have been feeling dishonored because they feel like the lyrics in the national anthem don't include them because they look different. To show how they feel they have been refusing to stand for the national anthem.


Brian M.

VS North HS

Italiano/Suarez Per 2

These letters were written by 9th grade students. They spent two weeks researching issues and one week learning how to write an argument letter. This was the first project of this magnitude that they have ever experienced, they learned a lot, and they are very happy to be done! Thank you for reading.

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