Kaepernick Research Paper.docx - Cameron Robinson Research...

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Cameron Robinson Research Paper English 1101 Fall 2018 The Colin Kaepernick Controversy The world was struck with awe when ex-quarterback of the 49ers, Colin Kaepernick, performed the most controversial demonstration in sports history since John Carlos’s and Tommie Smith political demonstration during the 1968 Olympics. Kaepernick's protest began during the preseason of 2016, which accumulated a vast range of criticism and praise. His protest was fueled in response to the oppression of people of color in the United States of America. Kaepernick's actions related to his protest has influenced other athletes and celebrities to take part in this fight for justice by either kneeling or raising their fists during the National Anthem. Nike took a considerable risk when making the ad featuring Kaepernick, but the outcome had a positive impact around the world. Recently, Rihanna and Pink declined the opportunity to perform for the Super Bowl halftime show in 2019. When interviewed, Rihanna stated that she does not want to participate in the Super Bowl because she does not agree with the NFL’s stance in the Kaepernick controversy. Kaepernick despised what the United States stood for and for what it allowed to happen within its domestic confinements. He wanted his protest to be known, but he needed a way to catch the attention of the world. Colin Kaepernick chose not to stand, holding his right hand over his heart while reciting the national anthem. The national anthem is a ceremonial song in America used to encourage the
heart of every American and to pay respect to fallen American soldiers in war and to be appreciative for being in a country where we have freedom. He shares with the NFL Media the reason why he did not stand during the national anthem. He stated, "I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses Black people and people of color," and "To me, this is bigger than football, and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder." Kaepernick’s protest was frowned upon by those who misinterpreted his protest. Many assumed he was trying to disrespect the military when really his whole statement was about race and the struggles that come with being a minority in America. Kaepernick's unapologetic actions of protest are in regard to the recent killings of “innocent” people of color in the hands of government officials and police. Every day you hear something new about an African American being shot by a police officer, but the police officer goes unpunished because it was an “accident” or “involuntary manslaughter.” These killings have been resolved as “justifiable” which proves that the country does not have the best interest at heart for people of color. Therefore, he believes he should not be expected to respect it. Before the 2016 preseason protest, Kaepernick did not participate in any protests. His protest against racial injustice or the oppression of his people started simply

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