Here's the thing. When Colin Kaepernick kneeled for the first time during the "Nation Anthem," he wasn't being malicious or hateful. He wasn't trying to disrespect the military. He was making an emotional statement that, while our country has freedom overall, there are still some who are NOT free and equal.
The 13th Amendment might have abolished slavery, but America still has not embraced people of color in the way that they should.
Racial bias still plagues America. Unarmed black men and women are dying all the time. Innocent children's lives have been taken, based on a subconscious fear that is present within some of our nation's police force.
Colin wasn't being disrespectful. He was calling attention to this.
The thing is, if President Trump had not been so quick to offer his opinion, this would have likely all blown over very quickly.
Instead, a man's job was taken from him for standing up for what he believes in.
If a black man can't protest by kneeling down quietly, in what way can he? What way is acceptable to you? What form of protest in the United States has ever been accepted? Not sitting in the front of a bus, not marching through the streets, not kneeling on a football field. What are they allowed to do?
As white people, we have to recognize our failures and the ways in which we continue to perpetuate a problem. Racism is a white people problem. It is perpetuated by us and by our own racial biases, some of which we are not even aware of.
When Kaepernick decided to kneel that first time, he was protesting violence, not the "National Anthem." He was protesting police brutality and civil injustices. He wasn't advocating for violence against the police. He was not trying to dishonor the flag or our country's freedoms, and especially not the military.
Do you know why the "National Anthem" is played at every major sporting event? It's not because sports are patriotic, but rather because the U.S. military pays a hefty fortune in advertising to have it played there. That's right folks, the U.S. military pays the NFL to play the "National Anthem" at every game. This isn't something the NFL came up with on their own; it's something the U.S. government came up with a long time ago to promote military pride.
So, again I ask you, would this really be a big deal if Trump hadn't latched onto it? Would it have mattered if it was a white man kneeling vs. a black man?
Why is a simple gesture of kneeling on the ground made out to be some heinous, aggressive move? Did I miss the part where he bombed the stadium?
If you're truly outraged by this, then maybe you need to check your bias.
Wealthy white men put rules in place about kneeling during the "National Anthem" to further control players in the NFL and to fire Kaepernick, and people are OK with this?
So Nike signed Kaepernick and now everyone is burning their clothing. Well, I hate to break it to you, but Nike already has your money, so you're wasting perfectly good clothes. Why don't you take those to all the Veterans you say you care about?
If you're still pissed off that a man knelt on the ground to acknowledge the murder of innocent black men, then I think you need to re-evaluate what kind of person you are.
Kneeling on the ground isn't a crime, but apparently being black in America is. That was his point.