Colin Kaepernick has been evicerated in the media because of his refusal to stand for the national anthem at a pre season football game. He insists he is doing so in order to shed light on the oppression of African Americans in the United States. However, while some applaud him for his freedom of expression most have condemned his behavior. Rightfully so.
“His gripe? He considers the United States to be “a country that oppresses black people and people of color,” even though he himself was fined $11,000 for using the “n” word during an argument two years ago. He takes his stand knowing that he could lose sponsors and even be cut from the team.
“I’m going to continue to stand with the people that are being oppressed,” Kaepernick said Sunday at his locker, according to Fox News. “To me this is something that has to change. When there’s significant change and I feel like that flag represents what it’s supposed to represent, this country is representing people the way that it’s supposed to, I’ll stand.”
The NFL star also insisted Sunday, two days after the 49ers’ loss to the Packers, that “I did what’s right,” and he will continue to do so.
“No one’s tried to quiet me and, to be honest, it’s not something I’m going to be quiet about,” he said. “I’m going to speak the truth when I’m asked about it. This isn’t for look. 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.”
Kaepernick isn’t afraid of the consequences. “I think there’s a lot of consequences that come along with this. There’s a lot of people that don’t want to have this conversation,” he said. “They’re scared they might lose their job. Or they might not get the endorsements. They might not to be treated the same way. Those are things I’m prepared to handle. …
He told his fellow-49ers why he’s taking the action he is — some agreed with his stance, but not his method. “I agree with what he did, but not in the way he did it,” wideout Torrey Smith said. “That’s not for me. He has that right. Soldiers have died for his right to do exactly what he did. … I know he’s taken a lot of heat for it. He understands that when you do something like that it does offend a lot of people.”
“Every guy on this team is entitled to their opinion. We’re all grown men,” linebacker NaVorro Bowman said. Smith and Bowman are both African-American.”
Now he certainly shouldn’t be fired for his beliefs. But much like the saga of Ryan Lochte, when you act in a generally embarrassing and reprehensible way that is shameful to the country that protects you, you should at the very least lose your endorsements.