Rihanna denies Super Bowl Halftime Show opportunity

Jasmina Singmouangthong, Print Managing Editor

Most people have heard of Colin Kaepernick’s kneeling protest and it has divided a lot of opinions. There are many who oppose Kaepernick’s protest and show it by destroying Nike products after the ‘Believe in something even if it means sacrificing everything’ campaign. They despise the quarterback for kneeling during the National Anthem because they believe it was disrespectful to those who serve.  

“I can tell you, speaking for three generations of my family, it is PRECISELY for men like Kaepernick, and his right to peacefully protest injustice, that we were willing to serve,” said Michael Sands, a Green Beret who is the son of a World War II veteran and father of an Army officer who served in Afghanistan, in an interview with Paul Szoldra and Christopher Woody of Business Insider.

Donald Trump encouraged the idea of kneeling being disrespectful. He made it all about people who serve and that people pay a lot of money to watch the football games, not to watch them protest.

“I don’t think you can disrespect our country, our flag, our national anthem,” Trump said. “Many people have died,” he added, referring to fallen military members,” he told NBC News reporter, Adam Edelman.

As president, Donald Trump is the symbol of our country. He is supposed to bring unity and peace among the people, but it seems that he enjoys lashing out and being negative about a movement that is peaceful, effective and is about bringing awareness to social injustice.

Trump tweeted, “A football game, that fans are paying soooo much money to watch and enjoy, is no place to protest. Most of that money goes to the players anyway. Find another way to protest. Stand proudly for your National Anthem or be Suspended Without Pay!” (ABCnews)

Then there are Kaepernick’s supporters, one of them being singer songwriter Rihanna. She’s brought even more light to this matter along with other famous singers such as Jay-Z, Adele, and Pink.

“I think that any celebrity has the unique advantage and challenge of bringing issues to focus in our country. So many people watch what they do and idolize them, they have to be conscious of everything they do. At the same time, celebrities are people too, and they have the right to stand up for what they believe,” said Susan Funk, band teacher of East High. They all are supporting Kaepernick by rejecting the opportunity to sing for the 2019 Super Bowl Halftime Show. When people see their icons using their famous platform to support Kaepernick, it shows that they are taking a lead and initiating change.

“The National Anthem has become bigger than what it’s supposed to stand for. All the things the flag is about, gives him [Kaepernick] the right to protest the way he chooses, in a way that doesn’t hurt anyone,” said Gary Griffin, athletic director and football coach of East High School.

They want to better society and show the value of humanity. Receiving hate about kneeling during the National Anthem or denying the opportunity to sing for the Super Bowl in efforts to bring attention to social injustice shows a lot about a person’s priorities.

“I would also deny to sing too,” said Mya torres, class of 2019. “I support them because you have to stand up for what’s right in the world. We live in a society full of hate and nobody respects anybody. It’s true because everybody judges each other.”

Everyone has moral standards in life, but this matter is more than football and those who serve. It’s about how people in this country act and react to something serious and it involves everyone.