We’re a mere two weeks away from training camp and Colin Kapernick, the NFL veteran QB, is still unemployed. Sure, he lost his starting job towards the end of the 2015, but he earned it back one month into 2016, ending the season strong with 16 touchdowns and 4 interceptions. With those stats, Kapernick should have been a highly sought after QB in an off season that lacked decent starting QB options. So why is Kapernick still unemployed? The unspoken, yet widely spoken reason: because Kapernick exercised his first amendment rights by protesting the police shootings of unarmed black men by kneeling instead of standing during the National Anthem.
I agree with Michael Bennett, Kapernick is being blackballed.
To be clear: I am not condoning nor disagreeing with Kapernick’s decision to kneel during the national anthem. I understand where those of you who are saying that it is disrespectful to the men and women who have risked their lives for our safety and freedom. I also understand where those those who are angry about the police shootings of unarmed black men are coming from. This is not about my stance on Kapernick’s beliefs and/or political stances and the right and wrong way to express those beliefs. This post is about the double standard that is the NFL. Why can a man who viciously (viciously!) abused dogs be allowed back into the league, welcomed even? Why can a man who beat (beat!) his girlfriend/wife be allowed back into the league as if nothing happened? Yet, a man who took a non-violent approach to expressing his beliefs is being blackballed?
Sure, one can assume that Kapernick’s protest did cause some level of distraction in the locker room. But those other controversies mentioned above? Those had to be distractions as well. So, why? Why can the NFL embrace players with violent histories and not someone who peacefully exercised his right to free speech?
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