3690: A Journal of First-Year Student Research Writing

Article Title

To Take a Knee

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Overview: Years ago, when slavery was legal, African Americans were viewed by many as less than human and were treated as such because of the color of their skin. James Wilson and Roger Sherman, delegates for the Constitutional Convention of 1787, even proposed an agreement that determined that each slave would only represent three-fifths of a man when determining state representation in Congress (Finkelman 2013). The Emancipation for African Americans was the key to a promised land of true freedom, but they were left disappointed because they were not actually granted the freedoms they hoped for. Today, even though slavery is illegal and black people have more rights than they ever had, they are still experiencing systemic racism in the form of police brutality and mass incarceration. This is a major issue in our society that needs to be fixed because this behavior towards blacks has a huge impact on African American communities as a whole, especially impacting the growth and development of the children in these areas. Former NFL quarterback, Colin Kaepernick, uses his skills as a parrhesiastes, or fearless speaker, to complete the first step in solving an issue like this, which is bringing awareness to what is going on because he knows that something needs to be done in order for our country to be truly equal.

Author's Reflection: Jay first attended St. John Fisher and is currently an Accounting and Accounting Information Systems double major at Canisius College; he is finishing up his undergraduate degree soon and will be pursuing his Masters in Business Administration and his CPA. Outside of school he currently has an Accounting and Treasury internship with NOCO Energy Corp., and also serves part-time at Park Country Club. When he is not working or going to school, he enjoys spending time at home with his fiancée and two dogs.

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