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Colin Kaepernick: 'I'll continue to sit'


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SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick sat during the national anthem in each of the team's three preseason games and said he plans to continue to do so until he sees real change when it comes to racial oppression in the United States.


"Yes, I'll continue to sit," Kaepernick said. "I'm going to continue to stand with the people that are being oppressed. 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."


On Sunday afternoon, Kaepernick spent nearly 20 minutes addressing reporters for the first time since he was spotted sitting between two Gatorade jugs during the national anthem before Friday's game against the Green Bay Packers.


Clearly aware of the backlash he's received since his stance became public, Kaepernick made it a point to clarify that he has nothing against the military.


"I do think that the talk has been more about me, more about I know a lot of people's initial reactions thought it was bashing the military, which it wasn't," Kaepernick said. "That wasn't my intention at all. I think now that we have those things cleared up, we can get to the root of what I was saying and really address those issues."


During the extensive interview, Kaepernick covered a variety of subjects, ranging from his reasoning behind sitting to whether he'll fear for his safety on the road this year to the presidential election.


Kaepernick said his decision to make his stance has been a long time coming and was born of years of both witnessing and being a part of racial oppression.


"It's something that I've seen, I've felt, wasn't quite sure how to deal with originally," Kaepernick said. "And it is something that's evolved. It's something that as I've gained more knowledge about, what's gone on in this country in the past, what's going on currently. These aren't new situations. This isn't new ground. There are things that have gone on in this country for years and years and have never been addressed, and they need to be."


Asked to offer some specifics, Kaepernick cited police brutality in a number of cities that have resulted in the deaths of black men.

Kaepernick recounted a story of one of his college roommates moving out of their house, and because he and his roommates were the only black people in the neighborhood, the police came and drew guns on them.


"I do think that the talk has been more about me, more about I know a lot of people's initial reactions thought it was bashing the military, which it wasn't. That wasn't my intention at all. I think now that we have those things cleared up, we can get to the root of what I was saying and really address those issues." 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick


"I have experienced this," Kaepernick said. "People close to me have experienced this. This isn't something that's a one-off case here or a one-off case there. This has become habitual. This has become a habit. So this is something that needs to be addressed."

Kaepernick said his decision to sit also wasn't made spur of the moment. He cited conversations with other players and influential people, such as Dr. Harry Edwards, as taking place in the time before taking action.


Dr. Edwards, who was instrumental in the protest by U.S. Olympians Tommie Smith and John Carlos at the 1968 Mexico City Olympics, is a 49ers team consultant and shared a hug and brief conversation with Kaepernick before Sunday's practice.

Kaepernick also addressed the team at a players-only meeting that took place Sunday morning.


"They asked me to talk and just explain why I did what I did," Kaepernick said. "And why I felt the way I felt. I had an open conversation with them. I told them why I felt that way and looked at things the way I do. A lot of it has to do with the history of the country and where we're currently at. I opened it up to all my teammates. Come talk to me if you have any questions. If you want to understand what I'm thinking further, come talk to me. It shouldn't be something that should be hidden. These conversations need to happen and can bring everybody closer."


Kaepernick said he has no plans to try to get other players to join him in his protest, citing the attention that goes with making such a move.


"This isn't something I'm going to ask other people to put their necks out for what I'm doing," Kaepernick said. "If they agree with me and feel strongly about it, then by all means I hope they stand with me. But I'm not going to go and try to recruit people and be like 'Hey, come do this with me' because I know the consequences that come with that, and they need to make that decision for themselves."


As for the timing of the protest, Kaepernick said he didn't choose now simply because it's an election year, but he did voice his displeasure with the two presidential candidates.


"You have Hillary [Clinton], who has called black teens or black kids superpredators," Kaepernick said. "You have Donald Trump, who is openly racist. We have a presidential candidate [Clinton] who has deleted emails and done things illegally and is a presidential candidate. That doesn't make sense to me. If that was any other person, you'd be in prison. So what is this country really standing for?"


From a football perspective, Kaepernick said he wants the team focus to be on winning games, but that there's also a time to discuss social issues. Asked whether he thought he could be cut for taking this stance, Kaepernick didn't seem concerned.

"I don't know," Kaepernick said. "But if I do, I know I did what's right. And I can live with that at the end of the day."

Kaepernick also said he has no concerns about potential backlash when he plays in road games this year.

"At the end of the day, if something happens, that's only proving my point," Kaepernick said.

As to where he goes from here, while Kaepernick continues to sit during the anthem, he says there are also plans to do more than symbolically protest.


"There are things that I have in the works right now that I'm working on to put together in the future and have come to fruition soon," Kaepernick said. "Those are things that I'll talk about as we get closer to those days."


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I understand his perspective, but I think his demonstration, in this particular case, is misguided and illogical. Actions like this are divisive and counterproductive and further fuel the us against them mentality.

 

http://toprightnews.com/army-ranger-tells-49ers-kaepernick-what-he-should-be-doing-instead-of-boycotting-natl-anthem/

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I understand his perspective, but I think his demonstration, in this particular case, is misguided and illogical. Actions like this are divisive and counterproductive and further fuel the us against them mentality.

 

http://toprightnews.com/army-ranger-tells-49ers-kaepernick-what-he-should-be-doing-instead-of-boycotting-natl-anthem/

 

He has that right as an American citizen. Is it more divisive than the issues he is standing for?

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He has no problem making millions playing a game in a country he doesnt support.

 

He's allowed to do what he wants and I support him for trying to bring attention to a subject.

 

I just find it funny he wont stand for the anthem but he will continue to play for and support a system/game/league that not only supports the system he is trying to protest but endorses it.

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And I'm just saying, if it were me, personally, and I was an embattled former 2nd round pick and I was probably at the least going to be losing my job at some point this season (if I haven't already), if I absolutely had to make a point, I would be doing everything I could to ensure my Civil Rights demonstrations bring people together and rallied around me. Because people are upset that he is disrespecting what the flag and the country stand for and the men and women that put their life on the line so that he has the right to stand (or not) and to play a game for millions of dollars. It's not that they are mad that he, like millions and millions of others, feel the injustice in the treatment of minorities in this country.

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You did not, I was wondering if you thought him sitting was more divisive than the issues he was sitting for.

 

I think they are one and the same, to be honest. It only adds to the perpetual cycle of hate, disagreement, and misunderstanding and when he takes the route he's decided to take, his message will be lost in that storm that follows in the wake.

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Sit. Stand. That's a personal choice. One which every vet and active duty service member served our country for. I find it disrespectful, but that's his choice. I might be swayed otherwise if his sitting actually solved the problem, but it doesn't. I'd be more impressed if he pulled a no show and went to a rally or something that actually supported his cause, but that's just me. God bless America.

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I didn't watch the whole interview. Apparently, his girlfriend is an activist with Black Lives Matter. Did anyone ask him what he's done for the cause? I mean did he lend time or money or is he just using his notoriety to lend credence to the cause? He can talk to me when he walks the walk.

 

I think he's about to be cut and this just about seals the deal that no other team will take him no matter how much the 49ers are willing to eat of the 12 million. He's getting beat out by Gabbert and some guy who was mowing lawns 2 weeks ago.

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I don't know why people who think he's wrong feel the need to treat him with kid gloves just because he has the right to do it. Of course he has the right to do it. "I may not agree with what you say but I'll defend etc", the whole thing. That's obvious. But it doesn't mean that you need to tread lightly around it if you think it's wrong.

 

For example, and I'm not comparing, just bringing out a point....when someone makes racist comments, we all agree they have the right to make them, yet have no problem condemning the comments and the person in the harshest way, sometimes even calling for them to lose their job etc...Acknowledging someone has the right to do something has nothing to do with passing judgement on it.

 

With that said, he has the right to do it, but it's a dopey thing to do and I don't respect him for it at all, and it's also a stupid thing to do because his problem isn't with the flag or the country it represents.

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I don't know why people who think he's wrong feel the need to treat him with kid gloves just because he has the right to do it. Of course he has the right to do it. "I may not agree with what you say but I'll defend etc", the whole thing. That's obvious. But it doesn't mean that you need to tread lightly around it if you think it's wrong.

 

For example, and I'm not comparing, just bringing out a point....when someone makes racist comments, we all agree they have the right to make them, yet have no problem condemning the comments and the person in the harshest way, sometimes even calling for them to lose their job etc...Acknowledging someone has the right to do something has nothing to do with passing judgement on it.

 

With that said, he has the right to do it, but it's a dopey thing to do and I don't respect him for it at all, and it's also a stupid thing to do because his problem isn't with the flag or the country it represents.

 

Right on, Zelmo. By refusing to stand, he is ignoring and disrespecting generation after generation of Americans, both civilian and military, that have worked and fought to bring this country to where it is. I don't think the majority of people in this country would disagree that our country still has a long way to go and I don't think many even disagree about what Kaep is upset about. But he's taking it out in the wrong way. You don't disrespect and disregard going on 3 centuries of progress and the accomplishments of your fellow countrymen because of several radically over-sensationalized police-committed killings.

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I've always thought it was kinda overblown playing the national anthem before every game anyway. Most of the world only play anthems for international matches, or maybe during finals.

 

Still, if you're not offering a solution to the problem you're just whining.

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Did wonders for mahmoud Abdul-rauf's career. He was playing ball in Japan by 30.

 

It doesn't bother me that he does. I think he's a moron but he can do what he wants. He also didn't draw attention to it and someone simply noticed and asked him about it so I'll give him credit for that.

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So you're a QB in the NFL, you have multiple opportunities to speak, to fund charities, to organize or champion a cause from your status/platform alone...you have your very own soapbox per se, where others don't....and after that, you choose THIS method of demonstration?

 

One, the demonstration was NOT clear and many missed the point he was trying to make. FAIL on his part.

 

Two, the demonstration was, is, and for as long as this country exists, disrespectful to all those who serve or who have served. He can spin it any way he wants. Maybe he had a different reason for doing it, but he spat in the face of all military, regardless of whether or not he intended to do so.

 

I could go on, but he's an asshole. Clear and simple. No, I take that back. I know a number of people who are assholes and I think they're generally good people. This guy is just a piece of shit. There, that's better.

 

I won't give him any more of my time.

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So you're a QB in the NFL, you have multiple opportunities to speak, to fund charities, to organize or champion a cause from your status/platform alone...you have your very own soapbox per se, where others don't....and after that, you choose THIS method of demonstration?

 

One, the demonstration was NOT clear and many missed the point he was trying to make. FAIL on his part.

 

Two, the demonstration was, is, and for as long as this country exists, disrespectful to all those who serve or who have served. He can spin it any way he wants. Maybe he had a different reason for doing it, but he spat in the face of all military, regardless of whether or not he intended to do so.

 

I could go on, but he's an asshole. Clear and simple. No, I take that back. I know a number of people who are assholes and I think they're generally good people. This guy is just a piece of shit. There, that's better.

 

I won't give him any more of my time.

 

I honestly think his time in the NFL is fast approaching its end, so no one will have to give him any more time, hopefully.

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