Hillary Clinton tells girl who knelt for Pledge of Allegiance to 'keep up the good work'

Hillary Clinton tweeted encouragement on Wednesday to a Maryland sixth-grader who chose to kneel during the Pledge of Allegiance at her middle school. 

The 2016 Democratic presidential candidate sent the tweet in response to a video post about Mariana Taylor, 11, who said she was disciplined by her teacher at Catsonville Middle School in Baltimore County, Maryland, after she chose to take a knee in protest during the pledge. 

“It takes courage to exercise your right to protest injustice, especially when you’re 11!” Clinton said. “Keep up the good work Mariana.” 

“I kind of wanted to show people that what’s going on is not okay,” Mariana told The Washington Post in May. Earlier in the school year, when assigned to write a paper about someone she admired, she chose former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who started a national debate with his decision to kneel during the national anthem to protest police brutality and racial inequality. 

During testimony to the Baltimore County School Board, Mariana said her teacher told her that she was “disrespecting the country” and brought up family members serving overseas. 

“I left the classroom in tears,” said Mariana, whose experience also drew the attention of the American Civil Liberties Union. 

According to the Post, school officials denied that any student had been reprimanded or disciplined  “for nonparticipation in patriotic observances.” 

President Donald Trump has passionately and repeatedly condemned NFL players who have followed Kaepernick’s example. Although she does not mention Trump by name, Clinton’s encouragement of Mariana clearly shows she is at odds with her 2016 opponent on the issue. 

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Some NFL players demonstrated during the national anthem at several preseason games Thursday night, protests that again drew a rebuke from President Donald Trump. (Aug. 10)
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Colin Kaepernick's national anthem protest started49ers safety Eric Reid joined Kaepernick in kneeling49ers teammates Colin Kaepernick (7) and Eric ReidKaepernick takes a knee during the anthem before theKenny Britt (18) and Robert Quinn (94) of the RamsBroncos linebacker Brandon Marshall knelt during theBrandon Marshall kneels for the anthem before the seasonChiefs cornerback Marcus Peters raised a black-glovedDolphins players, from left, Jelani Jenkins, ArianColin Kaepernick began his national anthem protestKaepernick kneels during the national anthem beforeWhile plenty of fans have voiced their disapproval,

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