September 7, 2018 at 1:25 pm

Alumni News | Funcheon’s Second Op-Ed For Cincinnati’s Streetvibes

A smiling Maria Funcheon

Maria Funcheon

After Maria Funcheon‘s first op-ed was published in Streetvibes Cincinnati, they encouraged her to write more!

She wrote an op-ed based on the paper she wrote in Dr. Steve Scanlan‘s Social Movements class.

Streetvibes is a social justice-focused paper that benefits the Greater Cincinnati Coalition for the Homeless. All paper distributors are homeless or formerly homeless and keep the profits they earn from selling the papers in downtown Cincinnati.

Kaepernick, Athlete Activism, and the Future of the NFL

by Maria Funcheon

Noted essayist James Baldwin once stated, “I love America more than any other country in the world, and, exactly for this reason, I insist on the right to criticize her perpetually.” Freedom of speech has often been touted as a bedrock of American values, the importance indoctrinated in the hearts of Americans at a young age. When former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick chose to remain seated during the national anthem in the 2016 football season in order to protest police brutality, his actions were seen by many as disrespectful, unpatriotic, and un-American. In the eyes of many, Kaepernick was ungrateful for the opportunities his country had afforded him.

What most didn’t realize, however, is that his protest stands atop a rich history of sportsmen who have not only spoken out against issues of race and discrimination in America, but who have done so in the realm of sport and in their roles as athletes. In anticipation of the upcoming football season, it’s time for Americans to understand Kaepernick and others who choose to kneel are following in the footsteps of many athletes of color in history who have challenged what it truly means to be free and equal in America….

Funcheon ’18M graduated with her M.A. in Sociology from the College of Arts and Sciences at Ohio University and now works as a global education consultant in New York City.

Connect with her on LinkedIn.

Read about her first op-ed for Streetvibes here.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *