The NFL is feeling a lot of heat from fans today over what they’re calling Colin Kaepernick’s “blacklisting” from the league. As most of us know, the former San Francisco 49ers player made headlines last season by taking a knee during the National Anthem prior to the games. His reasoning for boycotting the flag was to protest police brutality against black men.
Following his example, countless other players from various NFL teams stood with the quarterback and took a knee before games. This started the debate over how athletes should handle political issues and had people all over the country in a heated debate over the controversial topic.
Today, hundreds of Colin’s supporters took a stand against the NFL by protesting outside of their headquarters in Manhattan. The New York Times reported that various groups rallied in support of Kaepernick. The Justice League NYC and Color of Change were just a few of the dozen or so groups who made an appearance.
ESPN reports that many of the supporters at the rally were wearing Kaepernick jerseys and holding up signs to support the unsigned football star. Some signs simply called for fans to boycott the NFL while others showed deeper issues.
“Black Lives Matter,” read a sign from one protester.
In March, the 29-year-old opted out of his contract with the San Francisco 49ers and has yet to be picked up by another team in the league.
— Justice League NYC (@NYjusticeleague) August 23, 2017
“How in the world can we call ourselves the land of the free, the home of the brave, and you get vilified and criminalized just for speaking your mind?” Rev. Jamal Bryant said.
Supporters at the rally made their point very clear — the NFL should applaud Colin for using his celebrity status to stand up for his rights, not condemn him. Many people, including Derrick Johnson of the NAACP, have also requested meetings with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, according to Perez Hilton.
Goodell has continued to stand by his statement that the NFL’s 32 teams are not banning or punishing the former NFL quarterback. The commissioner continues to defend the coach’s decisions to not sign Kaepernick.
Great to see my Brother @realcoleworld I appreciate you not just talking about helping the people, but actually going out and doing the work! Check out his show, it’s amazing! #Neighbors Go to KnowYourRightsCamp.com to purchase your merchandise. All proceeds go to fund @yourrightscamp #KnowYourRightsCamp
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For Colin supporters who were unable to attend the rally today, there is a Change.org petition going around to boycott the NFL until a team signs Kaepernick. As of today, the petition has already received 170,000 signatures.
Do you think the NFL is punishing Colin for taking a knee during the National Anthem, or do you think he simply isn’t good enough to play in the league?
[Featured Image by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images]