Apparently, the protest kneeling of athletes in the U.S., most prominently on display by members of American teams, is catching on in other parts of the world.
On Saturday morning, the players and coaches on the Hertha Berlin soccer team kneeled prior to the start of the Bundesliga game against Schalke, in a show of solidarity with their American sports counterparts.
The protest was clearly an official position of the team itself, as evidenced by the words of the Hertha stadium announcer, who announced to the fans, “Hertha BSC stands for diversity and against violence. For this reason, we are joining forces with the protest of our fellow American athletes to take a stand against discrimination. For a tolerant Berlin, both now and forevermore.”
What’s more, a tweet from Hertha’s official Twitter account crowed about the team’s protest:
“Hertha BSC stands for tolerance and responsibility! For a tolerant Berlin and an open-minded world, now and forevermore! #TakeAKnee #hahohe”
While U.S. athletes have chosen to make their protests during the playing of the national anthem, Hertha Berlin went to their knees without the cue of any similar patriotic expression. In fact, unlike in the U.S., the German national anthem is not a standard feature of athletic contests there, and the anthem was not played before the start of Saturday’s contest.
By Robert G. Yetman, Jr. Editor At Large