Quarterback Colin Kaepernick is celebrating a bittersweet anniversary on Wednesday. August 14 marks three years to the day that he first silently protested during the National Anthem to bring awareness to police brutality and racial inequality. This also marks the moment that his NFL career took a turn and ultimately resulted with him out of the league.
Since Kaepernick last took a snap as a member of a professional football team (January 1, 2017), there have been questions about whether or not he is being blackballed by the NFL owners. He, along with safety Eric Reid, even sued the NFL for collusion, but that case was settled this past year. And while Kaepernick still has not found an opportunity to rejoin the NFL, he does not regret his decisions. In fact, he even posted a video on Twitter to show his dedication to his cause.
Today marks the three year anniversary of the first time I protested systemic oppression. I continue to work and stand with the people in our fight for liberation, despite those who are trying to erase the movement! The movement has always lived with the people! ✊🏾August 14, 2019
"Today marks the three year anniversary of the first time I protested systemic oppression. I continue to work and stand with the people in our fight for liberation, despite those who are trying to erase the movement! The movement has always lived with the people!" Kaepernick wrote on Twitter.
Kaepernick originally began protesting by sitting on the bench during the 49ers' first two preseason games in 2016. At first, his protests weren't noticed due to Kaepernick being out of uniform, but the situation changed on Aug. 26 when he was spotted on the bench in full uniform. He stated when asked that he sat to protest police brutality and racial inequality.
One intriguing aspect of this anniversary is that it came on the same day that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell fielded multiple questions about Kaepernick's status with the league during a joint press conference with Jay-Z and Roc Nation. During this meeting to announce a new partnership, Goodell stated that Kaepernick is free to sign with any team.0comments
Additionally, Goodell referred to this new partnership with Roc Nation as "protest to progress" and mentioned the change in the communities that Kaepernick is trying to drive.
Whether this new partnership is truly about changing the community has been questioned by Eric Reid, but the veracity will not affect Kaepernick. He has stated on Twitter that he plans to keep fighting, and he will do so with or without the support of the NFL.