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The student voice of Sycamore High School in Cincinnati, Ohio

The Leaf

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September Columns: Airpods, Kaepernick, athletes making a difference

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OPINION:

Earlier this month, Apple released two major products. They are the iPhone 7 and the Apple Watch Series 2. There is one key component that has sent Apple users, specifically iPhone users, and the Internet into a craze.

It was revealed at the keynote event, where Apple showed off its new toys, that the new iPhone will not have a headphone jack. Instead, it will have a stereo sound system and the phone will come with Lightning EarPods (that plug into the lightning port).

Frankly, I do not find this to be as much of a burden as people think it will be. The problem I have with the whole situation is the new Apple AirPods.

AirPods are the new wireless headphones that will be sold by Apple in mid-October. They supposedly have better sound quality, but that is truly the only major advantage. It just sparks the question of, are they really worth it?

After seeing the price I can assure you they are most certainly not worth it. The price tag is $159. There are plenty of wired and wireless headphones out on the market that are just as good, if not better than these headphones.

Did I forget to mention some of these will not empty your wallet?

The main concern, however, is losing the AirPod itself. Imagine the stress and embarrassment of having to walk into a store and ask for one AirPod.

Will they even sell single AirPods? If they do how much will they cost?

Although I cannot force you, I can urge you not to purchase the product. At the very least, do me a favor and weigh your other options before dropping more than just a pretty penny on something that you may not even use every day.


SPORTS:

This year’s start to the NFL season has been like no other. The sports world is divided on the protest of Colin Kaepernick, the backup quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers.

Now, an African American athlete who was largely supported by a white audience is being demonized because he believes that he should “stand with the people that are being oppressed.”

The United States is a country founded on the idea of freedom, something we love to talk about.

We cannot say that it is a good thing to be free to express opinions and feelings, but criticize those that do just that.

I struggle to understand how people do not want Kaepernick to use his freedom.

Kaepernick has started a national conversation that seems to die off after each tragic police shooting.

Kaepernick’s critics chastise him for being unpatriotic and disrespectful, however, our nation is only as strong as our citizens, and our opportunity to change is only as strong as the will of those citizens.

The flag is not the end all be all. The flag is a powerful symbol, yes. But it is what the flag represents that really sets America apart from other countries.

Instead of complaining about when Kaepernick protests, maybe we as a society should spend more time focusing on the words behind the protest.


SPORTS:

Sports is not just sports. Politics are not just for politicians. They are for the people. Athletes have become major figure in America and across the world, their names and faces are everywhere.

People like LeBron James and Aaron Rodgers are names known globally. They have the ability to impact the nation and world in a positive way.

With all of their fame and power, they can not sit idly by and watch their neighbors suffer. For injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.

Every athlete in sports has the chance to make a difference in this unjust world, and they should.

They are in a position of power with their large media and social media stage and the millions of dollars they make to say how they feel and implement change since they can donate part of their salaries or create foundations as many of them do.

Basketball player Dwayne Wade chose to play in his hometown of Chicago because of the extreme gun violence in the city, especially in black dominant neighborhoods. He became especially motivated by the murder of his innocent cousin.

He, and several NBA stars opened the ESPY’s (Excellence in Sports Performance Awards) with a call to action to end the violence. Wade blended his world of sports and politics by using the stage of an awards show to impact millions.

Sports can not just be sports because athletes are not athletes anymore. They are figures in our society that truly can make a difference; and athletes are.

Now it is up to the public to listen and take action.

 

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The student voice of Sycamore High School in Cincinnati, Ohio
September Columns: Airpods, Kaepernick, athletes making a difference