Kaepernick was right. That statement will cause one of two reactions: people who support him, and know what they are talking about, will nod their heads in agreement while those who don’t support him will get upset and stop reading. Whatever the case may be, he was right and there is no doubt in my mind about it; Colin Kaepernick was right.
If anyone is confused about what I am referring to, here is the breakdown. During a San Francisco 49er’s preseason game in 2016, Kaepernick was noticed to be sitting down during the national anthem. It caused a small stir but not enough to get attention. By September, Kaepernick was seen kneeling, instead of sitting down, or the preferred, standing, during the national anthem.
He continued to do this with more and more players from his own team, as well as others in the league, joining him and refused to stand during the anthem, rather, they took a knee. As the season continued, Kaepernick’s actions inspired more people, such as soccer players and high school athletes who joined in his peaceful protest. This started debates by pretty much everyone who knew what was going on, more negative reviews than good. By the next year, early 2017, Kaepernick was released from the 49er’s and the backlash continued.
Kaepernick hasn’t played for the NFL since. After getting released and branded as someone who disrespected this country, he was seen as a pariah. Even President Donald Trump was caught giving his two cents on the situation, and I’m sure everyone can guess his reaction to it. But, that wasn’t the end of Kaepernick.
At the beginning of this month, the successful athletic brand Nike released an ad that turned the entire country upside down. Nike made Kaepernick the new face of the brand and everyone basically lost their marbles, but it’s funny because everyone that has gotten mad really doesn’t know why they’re mad in the first place.
Kaepernick started kneeling for one reason and that reason was to peacefully protest against police brutality. At the time, there were countless incidents that left civilians dead because of excessive use of police force and most of those incidents included African Americans. Kaepernick was fed up and frankly, so was everyone, so he decided that enough was enough and he needed to take a stand.
For everyone that thought that Kaepernick was dead wrong, I have a question for you: why? Why do you think that? If you say it’s because he disrespected the country and those who have fought for this country, were wounded or lost their lives then let me stop you right there. Kaepernick didn’t disrespect veterans and he had veterans on his side. In fact, after he sat down, a veteran came to him and told him the proper and respectful way to protest was to take a knee instead.
Honestly, everyone who tries to make the argument about respecting the veterans are hypocrites. Ask yourself, when was the last time you took a stand and helped out a veteran you’re so worried about? I’m not saying that we shouldn’t care about the veterans but unless you have actually helped, don’t make that argument. Kaepernick was trying to take a stand and peacefully protest for something he thought needed to be changed. He was taking a stand for his people, just like you’re trying to take a stand for your people, the veterans.
Another thing that happened was the backlash against Nike and honestly, the way people tried to boycott the brand was incredibly stupid. There were videos and pictures of people burning Nike gear. Shoes, shirts, shorts, book bags, anything with that famous check on it was on fire as if that was going to make a difference. That didn’t hurt Nike. In fact, Nike’s earnings went up. The fact that people took their own personal belongings and destroyed them actually made me laugh and I’m sure Nike employees laughed about it too. You already gave Nike your money so destroying the merchandise didn’t do anything but make you look foolish.
To everyone who started to hate Nike and decided to burn the gear, why didn’t you give those clothes and shoes and everything else to a homeless veteran you’re so worried about? Those shoes you just lit on fire could be on the feet of a veteran but instead, they’re walking around barefoot. Is that what you wanted or did you just not think it through? I don’t think you thought it through.
What Nike and Kaepernick did, from the beginning, was trying to bring everyone together in a peaceful way. But, it doesn’t seem like any kind of protest is okay in the eyes of some Americans. Would it have been better if Kaepernick and Nike both took to the streets, causing havoc? No. You can hate Nike and Kaepernick all you want but it’s not going to change the fact that people are still getting killed for no reason. Wake up and help out or keep your opinions to yourself until you decide to try and help the difference.