What Happens During the Pledge


photo by Kierah Kavicky

Ashton T. Livingston, Bradley Raymond, Entertainment Editor, Staff Reporter

Across America people are fuming about NFL players kneeling during the national anthem or pledge. For something as big as this it does relate to our small school. Joseph Jones, or Joey as he prefers to be called, has voiced his opinion by sitting down during the anthem during our homecoming assemblies. With this came some backlash from other students.

On this matter our school district says that they will stand behind a student that chooses to sit or stand for it is their constitutional right.

Jones has sat during the Pledge of Allegiance since seventh grade. He started sitting as a protest for a fellow student who was told to stand up unwillingly. Since then his ideology has changed. Jones said he was now defiant to pledge himself to anything. Recently, Jones has faced harassment for sitting during the Pledge of Allegiance . His protest though is protected by the First Amendment. The harrassment, Joey believes, is not.

Emily Matsuda, the mother of Joey Jones, believes strongly in the First Amendment saying that it’s a great way to spread ideas and beliefs. Expressing the freedom to sit during the pledge she believes is everyone’s right. Matsuda is openly against the harassment her son has been facing saying, “the First Amendment allows us to be free to speak our minds, but we are not free from the consequences of our actions.”When asked about why such controversy has come up about something like sitting during the anthem Mrs. Matsuda said that “people are tied up in emotion.” She also said Mrs. Matsuda wanted people to know that the act of sitting whether it be for religion or protest is protected by law.

Fellow student Brakken Rivers voiced his opinion on the matter. Rivers comes from a military family and believes that when people sit during the anthem or Pledge of Allegiance is a disgrace. Rivers’s views that for those who sit during the anthem don’t acknowledge what we’ve fought for as a country and the people who have fought for it. He believes the First Amendment is there for a reason.

Pedro Tavera, another student who has also come out to make his opinion heard, gave us his input. He believes sitting during the pledge is like acting as if the wars our country has fought, and the people who have died for your country never happened.