On Monday, 15th June, The Roosevelt High School team took a knee during the national anthem to protest against police brutality and systemic racism in Des Moines, Iowa.
The team, The Roosevelt Roughriders, took a knee together as one in their white uniforms as the anthem ‘The Star-Spangled Banner’ played in the background at Principal Park which is the home of Triple-A Iowa Cubs.
This trend of taking a knee was first introduced by Colin Kaepernick as he took a knee during the 2016 NFL season while the national anthem was being played.
He did it to record his peaceful protest against police brutality and prevalent racism in the country.Kaepernick’s move was criticized as well however, it became a symbol against racism in the entire world and today BLM protesters are using this symbol too.
Entire Roosevelt baseball team kneels during the national anthem at principal park. pic.twitter.com/0lUbKm3gLG
— Mr. SOUNDOFF (@johnsears) June 15, 2020
Alex Pendergast, a senior infielder of the Roosevelt Roughriders, told the media they are not disrespecting the flag or the national anthem but did it to bring everyone’s attention to the hot issue that’s creating a mess right now.
He also believed that showing the gesture as one unit will leave more impact than if some team members took a knee and some simply stood. He thinks their move will make a huge impact.
The school’s administration is also backing up the players as activities manager Tracy Johnson said, while talking to WHO, we encourage our students to express themselves and this was the time for them all.
The Iowa High School Athletic Association does not have any obvious rule on protesting during the national anthem however the association did not make any comment when the media inquired about it.
This happened on the opening of high school basketball and softball season which was delayed before due to the pandemic. According to the media, a few players did not take a knee with the team.