According to The Michigan Daily, one Rackham student by the name of Dana Greene kneeled at the block ‘M’ in the Diag on University of Michigan's campus starting at 7 a.m. Monday morning with plans to complete a full 24-hours of kneeling.
“I’ve been on this campus for five years, I did my undergraduate here and each year the campus climate has gotten worse and worse," Greene explained. "The recent election, the man who holds the highest office the land, the president of the United States (Donald Trump), has made this issue even worse."
The idea for the act of protest came from the inspiration of Colin Kaepernick and all that is going on in the NFL surrounded around #takeaknee.
Almost 100 students, faculty, and staff knelt with Greene throughout the day. Many more gathered around the block 'M' on the Diag in solidarity. Protesters even had two tents pitched above their heads and dozens of cartons of water bottles at their feet by the time the afternoon came.
— Angela Dillard (@adillard4) September 25, 2017
— CEAL (@CEALumich) September 25, 2017
— Ellen Muehlberger (@emuehlbe) September 25, 2017
“What Colin Kaepernick did last year, taking a knee, wasn’t to disrespect the troops. In fact, I think I’m honoring the troops right now because they gave me the right to do this. My father served in the military, and … this isn’t disrespecting the flag, this is honoring it,” Greene said. “If Black people can get killed in this country and not get any justice for their lives, for their murder, then that’s disrespecting the flag.”
University of Michigan President Mark Schlissel wrote a statement in support of Greene's protest.
Green further explained his disposition in a letter addressed to Schlissel.
"I have crossed the fountain in Ingalls Mall as an incoming freshman and as a graduate," he wrote. "I have watched as anti-Muslim, anti-Black, anti-Latinx, and anti-immigrant rhetoric has raced across our campus and across our country…I am no longer numb but instead, I will use this moment in time to make a statement."
Greene continued to kneel in 90-degree weather in protest. That is dedication, courage, and strength. We hope that his stance has touched the heart of other students, faculty, and staff to realize the importance of taking a stand or a knee for what is right.
You can watch a video of his impact below.