Colin Kaepernick, a quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers, has offended Americans of all races and creeds with his decision to sit through the National Anthem during the team’s first three preseason games.
Kaepernick’s shocking actions are his way of speaking out against the state of race relations in the US, and he plans to continue sitting through the National Anthem until he feels that the “flag represents what it’s supposed to represent, this country is representing people the way that it’s supposed to.”
Kaepernick is biracial with white adoptive parents. He says that he knows “there’s a lot of consequences that come along” with his actions, and he’s prepared to lose his job if it comes to that. “No one’s tried to quiet me and, to be honest, it’s not something I’m going to be quiet about,” said Kaepernick. “I’m going to speak the truth when I’m asked about it. This isn’t for looks. This isn’t for publicity or anything like that. This is for people that don’t have the voice. And this is for people that are being oppressed and need to have equal opportunities to be successful. To provide for families and not live in poor circumstances.”
Not for the publicity? Of course it’s for the publicity. If Kaepernick really wanted to help improve race relations in the United States, he would invest some of the millions he makes playing football in appropriate organizations and projects.
The NFL isn’t about the game, about the points, or about which team wins which championship; it’s about the fans. Professional sports organizations like the NFL are ultimately about providing entertainment and role models for children growing up in the United States. This petulent quarterback has become a negative role model for today’s youth, and the 49ers would do well to oust him.
Kaepernick’s salary comes from football fans, and it is those same fans he is disrespecting by refusing to stand during the National Anthem. Some have responded by setting fire to their expensive Kaepernick jerseys and watching them burn to the tune of the National Anthem.
When interviewed, Kaepernick criticized Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, and America’s police force. “You have become a cop in six months and don’t have to have the same amount of training as a cosmetologist,” he said. “That’s insane. Someone that’s holding a curling iron has more education and more training than people that have a gun and are going out on the street to protect us.”
“At this point, I’ve been blessed to be able to get this far and have the privilege of being able to be in the NFL, making the kind of money I make and enjoy luxuries like that. I can’t look in the mirror and see people dying on the street that should have the same opportunities that I’ve had,” he added.
Kaepernick was spotted talking with his friend Harry Edwards on Sunday, and the two shared a quick hug before he took the field. Edwards is an African-American sociologist and activist who helped organize the “Olympic Project for Human Rights,” a black power protest in 1968 when US sprinters John Carlos and Tommie Smith bowed their heads and raised gloved fists during the National Anthem as they stood on the winners’ podium.
In terms of role models, we agree with New York Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz:
“I think, personally, the flag is the flag. Regardless of how you feel about the things that are going on in America today and the things that are going on across the world with gun violence and thing like that. You’ve got to respect the flag and stand up with your teammates. It’s bigger than just you, in my opinion. I think you go up there. You’re with your team, and you pledge your allegiance to the flag and the national anthem as a team, and then you go about your business, whatever your beliefs are.”