Colin Kaepernick appeared to reference Jay-Z’s new partnership with the NFL in a new post on Instagram and some are interpreting it as a dig against the rapper.
“My Brothers @e_reid35 @kstills @ithinkisee12 continue to fight for the people, even in the face of death threats,” the former NFL quarterback wrote. “They have never moved past the people and continue to put their beliefs into action. Stay strong Brothers!!”
As TMZ notes, Kaepernick’s use of “moved past” echoes a comment that Jay-Z made in the announcement of his new social justice and entertainment initiative with the NFL.
The deal means that Jay-Z and his company, Roc Nation, will serve as “live entertainment strategists” and be involved with the leagues “Inspire Change” program. The partnership means that Jay and Roc Nation will be involved in the selection of artists chosen to perform at the Super Bowl.
“‘I think we have moved past kneeling. I think it’s time for action,” he said, as reported by Yahoo. “We forget that Colin’s whole thing was to bring attention to social injustice. In that case, this is a success. This is the next phase.”
The Grammy-winning rapper, who has built a persona off of his business acumen, has faced backlash for those comments from online commenters, and from football players as well.
Eric Reid, safety for the Carolina Panthers, recently slammed the move during a locker-room interview.
“When has JAY-Z ever taken a knee? Yes, he’s done a lot of great work,” Reid said. “A lot of great social justice work, but for you to get paid to go into an NFL press conference and say that we’re past kneeling? Again, asinine. He got paid to take the bullets that he’s taking now because we’re not having it.”
I asked Eric Reid if he thought Jay Z was a sell out and here was his answer. pic.twitter.com/ZZLm0q8bVU— Ashley Holder (@AshNoelleTV) August 17, 2019
As Kaepernick noted in his Instagram post, Reid is one of the players who has taken a knee during the national anthem at football games and continues to do so.
As Vibe reports, the criticism against Jay-Z was amplified by his claim that he spoke to Colin Kaepernick about the initiative before it was announced. But Kaepernick’s girlfriend, radio personality Nessa, has said that isn’t true.
As The Guardian reports, on her radio show, she took issue with the fact that Jay-Z was incorporating social justice into his business deal with the NFL.
Colin Kaepernick has not given a direct comment on Jay-Z’s deal with the NFL as yet.