Standing, kneeling individually, linking arms as a team or waiting in the locker room, NFL players continue to show what they believe through their actions during the national anthem.

Colin Kaepernick, former San Francisco 49ers quarterback, sat on the bench during the national anthem in a 2016 preseason game against the Green Bay Packers and began the #TakeaKnee trend. After the game, he told NFL Media: “I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color. To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.”

His actions began a ripple-effect of protest that continues in the 2017 football season, spurring controversy and conflicting comments, especially on social media platforms.

President Trump’s two-part tweet expresses some of the feelings towards the protesting.

Deseret News published their stance on national anthem protesting on Sept. 27, saying this year’s protests have become focused on reacting to President Trump’s comments rather than Kaepernick’s intentions.

“This is a needless and unfortunate controversy–one that helps no one’s cause and serves only to further divide a nation that should stand united,according to Deseret News.

BYU-Idaho students have opposing view points on the controversy. Many think that protesting during the national anthem is disrespectful.

Rachel Acton, a sophomore studying elementary education, said her initial reaction upon hearing the news is that players are showing disrespect when they kneel during the national anthem.

Shawn Wells, a junior studying biology, said protesting during the anthem is ignorant. Protestors “view the flag and the anthem celebrating it as a symbol of slavery rather than a standard under which more people have fought for freedom than any other symbol,” Wells said. “It is disrespectful because anybody who decides to shame a symbol of our nation, the freedom we celebrate and the men and women who died for that freedom is incredibly disrespectful.”

A few students, like Vanessa Calvi, a Chemistry major in her Sophomore year, have a different opinion of the protests.

She said she thinks players have a right to protest issues, especially if they do so with a nonviolent approach. While other students believe that protests disrespect the flag, Calvi believes players are honoring the rights our flag stands for and the people that have fought for those rights.