The Kaepernick Effect | Planet Ryan - Republic-Times | News

The Kaepernick Effect | Planet Ryan

By on September 14, 2016 at 8:10 am

I’d like to start off by reminding everyone that Colin Kaepernick, the average-at-best NFL quarterback who decided to hijack the NFL’s national platform to launch a protest by sitting during the National Anthem, was fined $11,000 in 2014 for allegedly using a racial slur toward a black Chicago Bears defensive end.

So, excuse me if I find it difficult to believe Kaepernick is passionate about the racist divide in this country. Using nasty racial slurs usually isn’t the best way to express that kind of passion but apparently, taking a knee while the National Anthem is played is totally fine.

Whatever.

I’ll be the first to concede that he has every right in this world to sit out while the anthem is played. But, just because it’s his right, doesn’t mean he’s free from the consequences of the optics of such a disrespectful call for attention. It was a ridiculously bad move, if anything, for his already shaky career as backup quarterback.

And that leads us to the second problem – he claims his move was to call attention to what he perceives as black oppression and he also mentioned the “bodies in the street” and “people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.”

The latter was a direct shot at the police, a group of folks who he thinks murder minorities in the street for fun. It blows my mind that some people actually believe that, but for a person of Kaepernick’s standing and influence in the community, such words are inflammatory and patently false.

He must not be familiar with FBI statistics, which say the vast majority of police shootings are justified – not to mention the fact that whites are killed by police more than blacks. But, hey, that would wreck every race-baiter’s narrative, wouldn’t it?

And about those “bodies in the street” … he didn’t mention cities like Chicago that often have weekends which results in dozens of dead bodies in the street, most stemming from black-on-black gang violence. How about taking a stand against that? Why don’t the race-baiters ever shuffle into town to tackle that indisputable, horrific problem?

Stats and facts aside, there will still be those who think like Kaepernick. And that’s fine, but aren’t there other ways for a guy like him to get involved and tackle his perceived problems with police and oppression? I’m betting with that comfortable, $19 million per year salary, there are.

Shouldn’t he be telling kids from his community that he’s the epitome of the American dream by making millions of dollars throwing a ball around on television and that, hey, anything is possible?

Some might argue that his protest worked because everyone and their mothers are talking about it and drawing attention to his issues. But, let me point out to you how few, if any, fellow athletes have joined his cause. That’s because they’re too busy making real change in their communities and not angering a majority of Americans – many of whom lost family members and friends who died defending that flag.

Anyway, he’ll have plenty of time to think about his poor life decisions while he rides the bench this season, which was just confirmed a few days ago by the head coach.


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Ryan Ledendecker

Ryan is a biweekly columnist for the Republic-Times newspaper. When he’s not working, he enjoys a good movie, bass fishing, and CrossFit.