Quick Commentary for August 29th, 2016


By Matt Silich and Courtney Boyer

Quick Commentary is a periodical critiquing of current events by the Daily Illini Opinions section’s editors.


Colin Kaepernick takes a stand by sitting

San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick overloaded the hot take machines of old, white men across the country this week after he chose to remain seated during the national anthem at an NFL preseason game. Kaepernick later explained his decision, stating, “I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and other people of color.” Many criticized Kaepernick, citing his wealth and success as reasons why he should appreciate the country that has facilitated his career. Those points are valid, but being rich should not preclude people from understanding and fighting against the struggles of the oppressed. Kaepernick didn’t seek out an audience for his actions until he was asked about them. There’s nothing wrong with acting on one’s personal beliefs, particularly when those actions support a noble cause.


Trump loses track of his foot; surprisingly ends up in mouth

NBA superstar and new Chicago Bulls shooting guard Dwyane Wade recently took to Twitter to discuss the fatal shooting of his cousin Nykea Aldridge in Chicago. Last Friday, Wade tweeted, ““My cousin was killed today in Chicago. Another act of senseless gun violence. 4 kids lost their mom for NO REASON. Unreal. #EnoughIsEnough.” Donald Trump unfortunately saw this as the ideal opportunity to try capitalizing on the political implications of such an action. But instead of offering any real support for Aldridge or her family, Trump instead briefly tweeted a general statement about the plight of African Americans and said that this incident is further proof that the group will vote for Trump. Donald has been increasingly focused on minority voters in recent weeks, perhaps realizing that it’s difficult to win a national election when your campaign has completely alienated one quarter of America. It goes without saying that his efforts are mostly falling flat (unlike his hair!).


Balthazar Getty makes a fool of himself

This past weekend, the Sunday Times ran a profile on Balthazar Getty, who is the great-grandson of oil entrepreneur, J. Paul Getty. His family is one of the wealthiest in the U.S. The Times’ profile of his daily life caused a great deal of outrage online. Getty described how he wakes up at 11 a.m. everyday and has his breakfast delivered to him in bed. He went on to explain his extensive skin care regimen, prescribed to him by Kim Kardashian’s skin specialist, and the parties he throws where “anyone who is anyone has attended.” The most infuriating thing that he said, however, was that money is all that makes people happy, and anyone who says otherwise is already wealthy and is trying to keep it a secret. It’s not a terrible thing to be a descendent of a wealthy family; however, it is terrible to portray yourself in a public media outlet as only being happy in life because of wealth. It’s safe to say that Getty does not come across as a guy who has any empathy for the people “beneath” him.


Earth-like planet is just light years away

Scientists have discovered a small planet about 4.2 light years away from Earth. This planet is one of the most promising planets in terms of life sustainability that have been found. Scientists have concluded that the planet may have liquid water, which makes it a great candidate for potential life-forms. The planet orbits Proxima Centuari, which is the Sun’s nearest star. Not much is known about this strange new planet, but scientists are very excited to learn more. This is great news for space exploration and science alike, as making new discoveries is always a huge plus. And a discovery as potentially ground-breaking and exciting as this one definitely deserves some attention.