Colin Kaepernick has set the internet on fire with his refusal to stand up for the national anthem. Everyone from Donald Trump to Jim Brown to Jerry Rice has commented on the 49ers quarterback’s protest.
Kaepernick thrust himself into the spotlight when his silent protest was noticed in a preseason game, and he explained himself.
“I’m not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color.”
Kaepernick, who has been removed from the spotlight since getting benched last year, said his protest stemmed from recent incidents of police brutality.
Not standing for up for the national anthem is a polarizing move and not one that will be ignored. So Kaepernick had to know the questions would be coming fast and furious.
Many people agree with his sentiments about racial injustice, but even some of his supporters disagree with his form of protest. The flag is a touchy subject and even the best reasons behind a protest can get lost, as people become emotional over the form of protest.
And of course, many folks are good and pissed off that a privileged athlete would dare disrespect the country that has provided him with the opportunity to earn nearly $12 million dollars this year. Many in this crowd suggest Kap “find a better country since he doesn’t approve of this one.”
Suggesting someone leave America because they point out real problems has never been a great way to address the protester’s concerns.
There are real problems here in this country. There have been many public cases that show the police in a bad light. Things could be improved and should be.
However, it’s unclear if Colin Kaepernick is really in touch with these issues he is now so concerned about, that he placed himself in the middle of a national controversy.
Maybe he’s sitting from on high making judgments about these injustices without taking a closer look?
Has he spoken to the families of any of the black men who he feels were killed unjustly by law enforcement officers?
Has he spoken to the families of the slain police officers in Dallas?
Has Kaepernick ever once spoken out against black on black crime that fills the TV news every evening?
Is he involved deeply in his community or is he living the life of a millionaire athlete who’s out of touch and knows only what he sees on the news?
What actions has Kaepernick taken to help minorities avoid going down the wrong road that leads to jail time in a truly flawed justice system?
Would he be open to having some of the BLM protestors not opposed to violence, living in his neighborhood?
Does he think he could have the same privileges he enjoys here in the U.S., in most other countries?
Would Kap go on a few ride alongs with law enforcement to see what really goes on in the streets?
Some of these questions may seem unfair. But when a public figure makes a very public protest, he better be ready to answer all of them.
There have been many athletes in the past who made unpopular stands and were hated for it at the time. Then decades later they were seen as heroic for taking unpopular stances on social issues.
Any reasonable person can see that this country has some real issues with the way the justice system works. And there are a few idiots who are given a badge and a gun.
But for a pro athlete to call out an entire country by not standing for the national anthem, he better have some serious knowledge about what he’s protesting.
Colin Kaepernick has made himself a target by choosing this form of protest. So he better not come in half-stepping with vague ideas about what’s wrong with America.
I support the guy’s right not to stand for the flag. Using the right to protest is one of the most American actions one can take.
I just hope he’s put plenty of thought into his reasoning because the questions are not going to stop anytime soon. Kaepernick best be ready to back up his protest with solid logic and be prepared to spend time in the trenches to get a better feel for the issues.