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Let’s Be Real: Colin Kaepernick vs. America

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Screen shot from the recent Nike ad campaign

Screen shot from the recent Nike ad campaign

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Screen shot from the recent Nike ad campaign

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That’s it, I tried. I tried to keep my opinion to myself about it. But now I’m fed up with it. It’s time to explain everything in the gruesome war of Colin Kaepernick vs. America.

In the years following the Great Knee of September 1, 2016, America has erupted in two amidst a brutal hailstorm of two very polarizing opinions: Colin Kaepernick supporting African American rights and peacefully protesting against police brutality, and Colin Kaepernick being an “anti-American” and “anti-military” pariah. 

Colin Kaepernick, the San Francisco 49ers quarterback who took a knee in peaceful protest against police brutality, did so after the deaths of Michael Brown, Tamir Rice, Freddie Gray, and other African American men and women at the hands and guns of white police officers ignited riots and protests across America.

The aftermath of the killings, in which most of the officers were fired or put on paid leave, but not charged with crimes, led to the creation of the Black Lives Matter movement. Later, as Donald Trump was campaigning for his soon to be presidency, the country boiled over.

Colin Kaepernick’s protests are not anti-military, racist, or anti-American.  They never were and never will be.”

When Donald Trump, our president, said, “Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, “Get that son of a bitch off the field right now. Out. He’s fired. He’s fired!” the entire country erupted. The NFL, fueled by the BLM movement and their vow of solidarity, upped the ante on their protests as entire teams hit the ground or locked arms in protest. Then, out of what could only be looked at as an act of fear, the 49ers cut Colin Kaepernick from their roster after Trump and many other American citizens took to Twitter to boycott the NFL, burn jerseys, and outright attack the players who are only abiding by their first amendment rights of free speech.

Now, I am not a military person by any means, though I do have friends and family who are or were in the military serving overseas who I deeply respect and love to talk to. In fact, I have immense respect for our men and women in all aspects of the military.

However, I am going make this as absolutely crystal clear as possible for those who are still too dense to admit it: Colin Kaepernick’s protests are not anti-military, racist, or anti-American.  They never were and never will be.  

Colin Kaepernick is peacefully protesting. Not racist or anti-American.

Colin Kaepernick is attending peaceful protest rallies. Not racist or anti-American.

Colin Kaepernick is raising money to help families and communities victimized by violence. Not racist or anti-American.

Colin Kaepernick is using his first amendment right of free speech to peacefully protest, given to American people by American soldiers who fought and died for said rights. Not racist or anti-American.

If people would stop to think about what Kaepernick is doing and why, then it would only appear obvious that the people who are attacking the NFL and its protesting players, burning gear, and saying they should be fired and thrown out of the country are the ones who are racist and anti-America. They are trampling on the right to free speech and deliberately doing so because they seem to believe that what they are doing is patriotic and right in the eyes of the American people.

Kneeling is a symbol of remembrance and respect for the fallen soldiers who died in the line of battle. It’s a perfect way to memorialize those who died to give Kaepernick and the rest of the NFL players their right to do what they do”

I am willing to bet that most, if not all, of the people who are headlining Kaepernick as an anti-American “terrorist” do not even know that it was a former US Army green beret officer that gave the idea of kneeling to Kaepernick. A GREEN BERET. Nate Boyer, the man who convinced Kaepernick to kneel, is a retired green beret and a former NFL player. You cannot get more patriotic than that. Even kneeling is a form of patriotism in the military. Kneeling is a symbol of remembrance and respect for the fallen soldiers who died in the line of battle. It’s a perfect way to memorialize those who died to give Kaepernick and the rest of the NFL players their right to do what they do.

Now, Kaepernick and Nike have joined hands and seek to heighten their cause. Two things have happened during this time. One, Colin Kaepernick was featured as Nike’s headliner in the 30th anniversary of their “Just Do It” campaign. Kaepernick delivered an absolutely amazing and emotional ad that aired live on NFL games and screens in Times Square. The other thing that has happened is a real shot in the gut to the NFL. Colin Kaepernick has recently filed a grievance to the NFL that the league has colluded to keep him out due to the protests. The grievance, which has now evolved into a trial full of interviews and investigations, is the forefront to what seems to be Kaepernick’s way of calling out the NFL for seemingly blaming him for the league’s lowered TV ratings and game attendances.

Personally, you can look at this any way you want to, but the fact of the matter is that Colin Kaepernick’s peaceful protests are not going against America or its people. They never were.

I stand on the side of the victims, but that doesn’t mean I hate the police. In my opinion, I think there needs to be a severe change in situational outlook when it comes to the sudden need for violence. Better discipline, better awareness, and better training need to be established so that the next time this happens, the police do not have to take another innocent life.

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About the Writer
Connor Gority, Staff Writer

My name is Connor Gority, or CG if you know me better, and I’m a junior at Tyrone High School. If you’ve ever been to Tyrone or live in the area and...

3 Comments

3 Responses to “Let’s Be Real: Colin Kaepernick vs. America”

  1. Tyrone on October 9th, 2018 9:23 pm

    I do not agree with this, to be honest, I think Kaepernick is being disrespectful. There are so many people risking their lives for our country and that flag represents our country and us the American people. If you think this is okay to do then I personally don’t think you have respect. One of my family members is in the military and has a four-year-old son. Next March she will be leaving to go overseas for one year. She will miss so much of her son’s life from his fifth birthday to his first day of kindergarten. But, she has respect for her country and never in my life will I disrespect that flag. There are other ways to express your opinion about your beliefs. he could write a tweet on twitter, write a book, or even just do a live broadcast or something to express his opinion. It is good that Kaepernick is helping the families that have had to deal with black crime violence and that he is going to “Peaceful Protest”. But, the flag is something that shows who are country is it brings us together as one, the national anthem is a song that is to show the pride Americans should take in the privileges they receive. people lose family members over wars to fight for that flag the flag is not a symbol of racism or anything. Kaepernick needs a new way to express his opinion.

  2. Brandon Escala on October 17th, 2018 2:54 pm

    @Tyrone

    It’s a peaceful protest and with total respect to you, your relatives, and really everyone, it’s his right to express his opinion the way he did

  3. Mr. Epic Miles on October 17th, 2018 10:33 pm

    Let’s be real though, that’s mad disrespect no matter what he meant by it.

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Let’s Be Real: Colin Kaepernick vs. America