Should Klete Keller be accountable for his actions in the Capital Riot?


CBS News

Photo of the Capital of the United States as people are rioting outside its doors on January 6.

Payton Baughman, Photojournalist

Klete Keller is a Phoenix native and former USC star; he is best known as an Olympic swimmer, having won gold in the 2004 and 2008 Olympics. He also appeared in the 2000 Olympics, winning five medals total in his Olympic career.


With that being said, Klete Keller’s political views have landed him in deep water. He has been charged with seven criminal charges, with six being dropped. In addition, Klete may still face up to 21 to 27 months in jail (CBS News).


He is a man we once saw on a pedestal, but now is mixed up with one of the most well-known political scandals of this year: the riot at the capitol (NBC News).


On January 6, 2021, Klete Keller was seen at the capital, wearing an USA Olympic jacket and yelling out explicit things about the Democratic party, makinga true mockery of himself and the Olympic committee. 


 His actions show the world that Olympic athletes aren’t these perfect beings we once thought they were – only humans, who make human mistakes…uman mistakes Klete Keller should be accountable for!


Others may think he deserves a second chance, but Ruby Bitler (12) disagrees, “ Yes, he does deserve to go to jail. Everyone [involved should], in my opinion, because treppassing is illegal, and they broke the law. Being an Olympian does not give him any privileges. As an Olypian, he should be inspirational and set a good influence for many other athletes, young and old, not setting a bad example of an American citizen.”


Of course everyone is entitled to their own political opinion, but the way Klete Keller along with some many others crossed the line, is the reason they are being charged.


Plus since when does being involved in politics get you a get out of jail free card? Others who have fought politics for the good have landed in jail as well. Take Martin Luther King Jr. for example, peacefully protesting in Birmington, Alabama,  which landed him in jail (American Stories). 


At least then we understood what Luther wanted and it was peaceful – not some Black Friday brawl!


According to CBS News, “Over 600 people, including Keller, have been charged for their actions in the January attack on the Capital. The rioters injured 140 police officers, according to the Capitol Police Officers’ union.”


Generally, the Republican party are huge supporters of Blue Lives Matter (Blue Lives Matter is a countermovement in the United States advocating that those who are prosecuted and convicted of killing law enforcement officers should be sentenced under hate crime statutes.)  which is strange considering that the people they advocate for showed the very same respect they disagree with? Do they even know what they believe in politically? Do they even know what they were “fighting” for that day? Or are they just a bunch of angry people just wanting to cause damage?


Overall, personally speaking I believe Keller should go to jail due to the fact he broke several laws and should be held accountable. This is especially true because he is an Olympic athlete, and he is held to a higher standard than other people. He should be doing something inspirational, not making a mockery of his country. 


What do you think? Do you think Keller should be held accountable?