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Oakland High School Football Players Lie Down During National Anthem

Published by Bleacher Report on Sat, 24 Sep 2016

Members of the Castlemont High School football team in Oakland, California, lay on the ground with their hands in the air while the national anthem played before their game Friday night.Kirk Morrison of ESPN Los Angeles passed along a picture of the protest, which was attended by San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who continued to make a public statement by kneeling:Castlemont Football noted Kaepernick also spent time with the players:Kaepernick kick-started a wave of anthem protests by opting not to stand for "The Star-Spangled Banner" during the NFL preseason. He's since been joined by a chorus of other athletes, including football players at every level and those from elsewhere on the sports spectrum.His public stance, which is focused on the issues of racial injustice and police violence, extended beyond the realm of sports this week. Richard Fausset of the New York Times provided a snapshot of protesters in Charlotte, North Carolina, following Kaepernick's lead Thursday night:Kaepernick told Steve Wyche of NFL Media in August that he understood the potential ramifications but decided to move forward with the protest anyway."This is not something that I am going to run by anybody," he said. "I am not looking for approval. I have to stand up for people that are oppressed. ... If they take football away, my endorsements from me, I know that I stood up for what is right."The response has been mixed.ESPN.com's Darren Rovell reported Thursday that a poll of 1,100 people conducted by E-Poll Marketing Research found Kaepernick was voted the "most disliked player in the NFL."On the other hand, Ahiza Garcia of CNN Money noted in early September that the quarterback's jersey had become the league's top seller thanks to a surge following the protests. His role in helping spark a national conversation also landed him on the cover of Time magazine:Kaepernick has remained at the forefront of the protests, too. Along with taking time to visit with those joining the cause, such as the players from Castlemont High School, he's pledged $1 million to groups involved in the issues he's trying to highlight.
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