Kaepernick’s self-serving Hypocrisy
Last week, San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick announced that starting next season he will stand for the national anthem instead of taking a knee. Curiously, this decision comes on the heels of his announcement that he will be opting out of his contract to become a free agent (translation: he is looking for a job). Kaepernick, as you may recall, had been sitting or kneeling when the national anthem was played. In addition to kneeling for the national anthem, Kaepernick was also seen wearing socks that depicted police as pigs and a T-shirt with a picture of Fidel Castro. It was also revealed that he was never registered to vote anywhere. In essence, Kaepernick, who complains about oppression of blacks and minorities, had the chance to vote for America’s first black President twice and took a proverbial knee on both occasions.
Let us review the facts regarding Kaepernick’s perceived oppression and crime. FBI data on crime in 2015 (most recent data) shows that 15.8% of white victims were killed by blacks and 8.6% of black victims were killed by whites. Close to 90% of black homicides are black on black and over 80% of white homicides are white on white. Black population is only 13% of the total US population, however, it accounts for 52% of the total homicides committed, with close to 90% of that being black on black homicides.
Let’s take look at the data from Chicago, which is the poster child for inner city crime. In 2015, when there were 3000 shooting victims in Chicago, Spike Lee made a movie called Chiraq where he compared the violence in Chicago to that of the war in Iraq. 2016 was much worse in Chicago with close to 4400 shooting victims. For the first two months of 2017, the numbers are trending even higher than 2016. In other words, the situation continues to get worse in Chicago.
If Kaepernick wants to bring about positive change, how about showing up in the inner city of Chicago? How about trying to unite the police force with the people? Since Kaepernick thinks the real problem is the cops, how about a nice drive through Chicago’s south side or west side without police protection? Things like that would take real work and involve significant life-threatening risk. It is so much easier to donate a few bucks, wear odd socks, and pontificate.
In not showing appropriate respect for the flag, Kaepernick had conveniently ignored the facts. Anyone who disrespects the flag, disrespects the country and all who have given life and limb for this great country. Some would say that he started the conversation. The kind of conversation that such behavior starts seldom leads to solutions. Just like his decision to not stand for the flag, Kaepernick’s reversal is also purely monetary and self-serving.