History has a way of being kinder to people who fought back than they were in the moment. Natalie Maines, Muhammad Ali, Martin Luther King Jr, Nelson Mandela. That’s not to say that what Colin Kaepernick did is the equivalent of spending 20+ years in prison and inviting your jailers to your inauguration as president, but what Kaepernick did was to choose an action that he knew would be almost universally unpopular to get as much attention as possible for his cause. And three days later we’re still talking about it.
I don’t have to agree with not saluting the flag — and I don’t — to agree with his cause. Or agree that his right to do so is what makes America America. And you Trump supporters telling Kaepernick to move to another country are proof that you are more what’s wrong with this nation than his refusing to stand for the anthem could ever be.
Because you prove you don’t understand who we are as a people. Even worse, you don’t care.
And his birth mother ‘scolding’ him on social media — I can’t even. You lost the right to have an opinion on his life choices when you chose not to raise him, lady. You should be celebrated for the choice of adoption, but the only “mother” that gets an opinion in the media on his actions is the one that washed his uniform and tucked him into bed every night. Go away, attention seeker.
Kaepernick never said he was oppressed or that he had a rough life — Thank you! for another racist-wrapped intentional half truth, Clay Travis. He said that if he didn’t use his platform to shed light on those who are; couldn’t risk losing a job, a career, or endorsements to stand up for them and their truth, then what good was he?
Don’t be naive. Colin Kaepernick wasn’t disrespecting our soldiers, Colin Kaepernick was illustrating exactly what they served and fought for (his right to do so), and he was getting your attention in the biggest way he could. And it worked. Just like a white supremacist robocall for Donald Trump in the Republican primary — it worked beautifully. I don’t want to live in a nation where I can be kicked out or jailed for speaking out against it and the government. And I don’t want to live in a nation where the symbol of my freedom is nothing more than some colors on cloth or a few bars of a song. People hated Muhammad Ali in his time for being an “unpatriotic draft dodger” and it turned out he was right. Kaepernick isn’t hiding, he’s boldly standing out and declaring his protest just like the Greatest of All-Time did. No, I don’t necessarily like somebody that disrespects our flag, but what I do like is someone that’s willing to face whatever backlash and consequences for standing up for what they believe in. I respected that about Kim Davis even if I thought she was an idiot who never read the Constitution and had no business taking taxpayer dollars for a job she didn’t intend to do. Kaepernick is choosing to get your attention, so why he has it — why not listen?
Like so many others from Jackie Robinson to Hank Aaron, he has a message. What’s great about America is we shouldn’t be afraid to listen, and we have the privilege to listen, even if we don’t agree with it.