Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback refused to stand during the playing of the U.S. national anthem to acknowledge wrongdoings of African Americans and minorities like Eric Garner, Philando Castile who have been brutally murdered by police officers.
”I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color,” Kaepernick told NFL network’s Steve Wyche.
“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 would later kneel instead of not participating at all while the national anthem was played during NFL games.
Kaepernick’s refusal triggered other athletes LeBron James, Chris Paul, Carmelo Anthony and Dwyane Wade to become vocal about police brutality of minorities.
Kaepernick, who led the San Francisco 49ers to an appearance in Super Bowl XLVII, was in a contract year when he took that public stance and nobody has signed him since.
Former Denver Nuggets guard, Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf was nationally villafied after he refused to acknowledge the U.S. flag.
Abdul-Rauf converted to Islam and refused to acknowledge the flag in protest.
He would not rise while the U.S. national anthem was played and as a result, ABC’s 20/20 and other television shows and networks drew national attention to Abdul Rauf’s public stance. As a result, Abdul-Rauf was suspended by the NBA and when he returned, he, the NBA and the Nuggets reached an agreement that he’d pray while the national anthem was played before games.
“Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf was cut off from possibly being the greatest scorer in NBA history,” Craig Hodges told Scoop B Radio.
Hodges, an NBA Champion with the Chicago Bulls during the Michael Jordan-era was blackballed by the NBA after he handed a letter to President George H.W. Bush during the Bulls’ championship visit to the White House.
The contents of the letter, according to Hodges made President Bush aware of the mistreatment of poor people and people of color in the United States.
Abdul-Rauf was ultra talented. The fiery guard out of LSU who went by the name Chris Jackson before his conversion to Islam was nasty! His scoring ability was unmatched and his jumper was deadly.
In his rookie season in the NBA he averaged 14 points per game and averaged a shade over three assists per game during the 1990-91 NBA season. Abdul-Rauf’s best year in the league was the 1992-93 NBA season. He’d average a smidge under 20 points and 4 assists per contest.
He was lightning quick and his first step in his prime could genuinely compare with the Golden State Warriors’ Stephen Curry.