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The lesson to learn from Colin Kaepernick

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posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 08:58 AM
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I usually dislike when stories of an entertainment people making political headlines happen. I like politics as much as the next person, but sometimes you just want to watch a game or movie without thinking about real world issues.

But I have to admit, I find this story about Colin Kaepernick refusing to standing for the pledge to be interesting.

Lets get this out of the way. Clearly he has the right to not stand. Other people have the right to be angry with him.

I disagree with what he did. He said “"I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color,". I do not believe that this country is oppressing people of color.

He also criticized Hillary and Trump.

But none of this is why I wrote this post. It is what happened afterwards that intrigued me.

Kaepernick is going to donate 1 million dollars to charities that help poor inner city people. I think this is fantastic.

Now keep in mind that I feel that Kaepernick is wrong in his protest, and I am not saying that his donation makes me more likely to agree with him. But I respect him putting his money where his mouth is.

I don’t care that Kaepernick is raising awareness, or trying to start a conversation. I think the problem he is making us more aware of is a myth (the government oppressing black people) and no one will have an honest conversation that discusses all of the facts. But what does matter to me is that Kaepernick is choosing to do something on his own.

Now other players are joining Kaepernicks protest. I hope they join his donation. If all of these celebrities and athletes put up large sums of money, maybe a real difference can be achieved. Now granted, you want to make sure the money you are donating is going to a good place (probably not the Clinton Foundation), but the spirit of this giving is good.

I know that many people on here will be unimpressed with his donation, and that is fine. I don’t even really care what organizations he donates to. I just think we can learn a lesson from this. Raising awareness is a joke for any issue. If you have a problem with something, do something yourself to try to solve it.

If you have a problem with Kaepernick, and you think he was offensive to veterans, by all means voice your opinion. In fact, you can hate the man, and I am ok with that. But take a minute to help a vet out. It doesn’t have to be a donation, just do something to help the people that you feel Kaepernick insulted.

I may have a problem with Kaepernicks theory that the government is oppressing black people, but I do know that there are many black people (and for that matter people of all colors) that need help. I still think that Kaeprenick is an uninformed attention seeker that unnecessarily politicized a sport I watch. But if he helps a couple of poor kids find meals and clothes, this outweighs my annoyance with him.

I try to remind myself that despite whatever political disagreements I may have with people, in general there are still areas of agreement we have, like poverty is bad. We may disagree with how to solve it, and in fact we may be bitter enemies when it comes to deciding who should win an election, but if my opponent is taking time out to work a soup kitchen, I respect that. I think that Kaeprenick helped reinforce that idea to me.

edit on 6-9-2016 by Grambler because: (no reason given)




posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 09:24 AM
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did Kaepernick put any blame on the current president? If he didn't, and only blamed the white people (Trump and Hillary), how much does he really understand?

plus

Him donating money, is like a married man getting his wife flowers after doing something that got him in trouble. If he thinks its a real problem, why wouldn't you put money into it first?



posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 09:28 AM
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a reply to: thinline

I don't disagree with any of what you said.

I guess I will try to simplify my point.

If you are starving, do you care that the person that helped get you a job or gave you a meal is a jerk?

If his money helps someone find a job, or some child find shelter or clothes, then I am happy for that. This doesn't change the fact that I think he is wrong.



posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 09:35 AM
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Not really. If they are just donating money to organizations like Black Lives Matters and La Raza do you think anything good will possibly come from it?



posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 09:49 AM
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I'll be honest, OP - I don't even know why this is a "story," or "event."

What relevance does this have? Why are so many Americans upset over what he did?

Political correctness is turning our society into a bunch of hypersensitive wimps who cry like babies as soon as someone does something they deem "offensive."

Sound familiar.... no?

Because this is exactly what a large demograph of Americans are doing to some stupid NFL player and what he chooses to do with his life.

I never once stood for the Pledge when I was in school - got a problem with that, or have a problem with Americans exercising their fundamental rights to choose whether or not they wish to stand or sit during something they may or may not agree with?

Move to a country that has forced flag and hymn worship. Go move somewhere that forces that # upon you, just don't feign outrage and victim-hood when it happens to you.



posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 09:53 AM
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a reply to: jjkenobi
I mentioned that you have to make sure the money is actually going to a good cause. Some charities are absolute rip offs. But that was not the point I was trying to make.

Regardless of what you think of Kaeprenicks protest, he is trying to personally do something. He is giving about 10 percent of his salary this year to try and help people. If his ignorance of the US oppressing people is any indication, he may end up giving money to nonhelpful organizations.

I am just saying that this is at least an effort to personally do something. I don't care if he was pressured into it to get good publicity. I don't care that his message is wrong. I do care a little in that I hope his money actually goes to a group that helps people, but even if it doesn't, I honestly believed he tried to help people at his personal expense. That is something.

I just care that he is taking a personal action to try and help people. I still don't like the guys message.

Let me put it this way.

I strongly dislike Hillary Clinton. If she were to give 1 million dollars to pay for two or three veterans health bills today, I would think that would be great.

Would I vote for her? No. Would I now think she was a good person? No.

I think we should all continue arguing our point of view, and disliking whoever we want. But we should also try to personally help change the things we care about instead of just raising awareness. And we should hope that the people we dislike are also taking actions themselves to change the world for the better instaed of just raising awareness.

My annoyance with hium and his message though will not make me overlook the fact that he is puttinghis money up to try to help people



posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 10:26 AM
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a reply to: Grambler

I've been mulling this over. I haven't had a lot of time to follow football the last couple years but hasn't Kaepernick's QB rating been in decline pretty much since he entered the league? I'm always a little skeptical of fading stars and publicity stunts.

Didn't I read that he switched from sitting to kneeling during the anthem out of respect for veterans and active military?


Kaepernick is going to donate 1 million dollars to charities that help poor inner city people. I think this is fantastic.


Not that I think anyone has an obligation to donate in order to have an opinion worth hearing (and I'm sure you'd agree) but I also think it's great to see somebody put their money where their mouth is.


I think the problem he is making us more aware of is a myth (the government oppressing black people) and no one will have an honest conversation that discusses all of the facts.


Ironically, the rhetoric from "both sides" basically boils down to the government is oppressing black people. On the Left there's institutional racism and on the Right it's welfare dependency. Neither of these concepts adequately describes reality though I personally believe institutional racism comes closer. My problem with a lot of activism focused on racial equality (which I think we'll all agree tends to come almost exclusively from the Left) is that it's ineffective as there's no real strategy except "awareness."

If we're being honest with ourselves, I doubt there are that many people who aren't aware that we have profound disparities. That's objective truth and so it's hard to deny. Beyond that is major disagreement as to the causes and solutions. I don't believe it's difficult to understand the origins as one has but to look at history.

From slavery it was right into Jim Crow. I don't think many rational people would debate that Jim Crow laws were anything but oppression. Less discussed are similar laws (typically at the local level) and de facto oppression that existed in the North. Take a look at the rates of illiteracy in the table at the bottom of this source. In 1900, 4.6% of native born whites were illiterate compared to a whopping 44.5% of blacks and other non-whites and that was a marked improvement over nearly 80% illiterate in 1870. Follow the waves of migrations from the agrarian South in the first half of the 20th century to Rust Belt cities. Then consider that by the late 1950's, manufacturing was already starting to soften and then peak manufacturing hit in the mid-1970s. I don't want to derail this thread (or spend a tremendous amount of time on a single reply) but I invite everyone to take a moment some time to look up historic wage ratios, employment rates, etc.

It's really not that hard to see how we got to where we are today.

What to do now is the real question. Here again I think that both political sides intuitively know what the solution to racial inequality ultimately is — economic opportunity aka jobs — but it's not much of a solution given the trends in employment. Unfortunately, I haven't seen any of politicians on the national level addressing the sort of paradigm shift that will be required to fix the employment situation going forward. Tax subsidized college education and pipe dreams about "bringing back the jobs" are little more than empty campaign promises.
edit on 2016-9-6 by theantediluvian because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 10:26 AM
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a reply to: Grambler
Uninformed attention seekers are ten a penny on ATS, surprised you haven't had more responses yet from more of them - that isn't a barb aimed at you Grambler.

It probably surprises me more that this is seen as a major issue - he's a sports player, not a politician and he's not playing for a national team when he has made these passive protests. I also don't understand why you say it's disrespectful to veteran service people - surely that's a stretch, or maybe that's what you are conditioned to think over there in the USA? What do you do if you are sympathetic to the veterans but deeply against the government that sent them to fight, for the veterans actually involved in combat?

If you don't think there are any racial issues in America - let's say disproportionate number of black people that appear to have been killed by some police (not suggesting it's through some government led initiative) - but other people do, then isn't that a discussion point? You seem very clear that you are right about this and he is wrong.... is that how we carry about a meaningful conversation?



posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 10:30 AM
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a reply to: Grambler

I have much respect for Kaepernick. Although I also agree with his mother that there are better ways to fight injustice, he defined his terms and took a stand (so to speak) for what he believed in, and has taken much grief for doing so. And as you noted, he did not stop at simply refusing to stand for the national anthem, he has donated a large sum of his personal wealth to the cause, and has said that he has something more in the works.

Talk is cheap, but this guy put his money where his mouth is, and he's walking the walk. And not for himself. I greatly respect and admire that. Is he perfect? Of course not. None of us are.

But I will ALWAYS side with the one standing for the sanctity of life over their opposition. And that's the biggest problem I have with this national dialogue. While I hear much in the way of threats and retaliation from law enforcement, what I don't hear is any respect for life at all, much less their responsibility to protect and preserve life. That's downright chilling to me.



posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 11:39 AM
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a reply to: Grambler
Yeah sorry I just can't get behind another 1%er telling me how tough he has had it.

If he really cared then he would have been making donations and putting in his own leg work. Not sitting on his a$$ during the pledge and anthem.

There are TONS of NFL players who give back to the communities they came from or where they play.
He has a camp for kids with heart problems. Don't see where he has done any community work for inner city kids. But I guess now that BLM is in the spotlight it gives him more PR.....something a quickly fading quarterback needs.



The 49ers quarterback has continued to focus his off-the-field efforts on Camp Taylor, a Salida, Calif.-based community for children suffering from heart disease. In addition to explaining his motivations in the organization's clip (above), Kaepernick related his "against all odds" motto to the plight of the kids.



posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 11:43 AM
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a reply to: Grambler

I have no issue with people exercising their constitutional rights. Even if I don't agree with them. In this case, I see his point, especially with how the US the criminal justice system treats black men, by criminalizing them. More blacks arrested, more blacks imprisoned, sentencing them to death four times more than whites and serving much longer prison sentences for the same crime as whites. And we all know how police killing blacks in the street get 'protected' by the force and get paid time off for killing innocent men.

Even before his protest was deemed 'newsworthy' (he was protesting before it became a story), he was very generous in donating time and money to children's charities. He's a good guy. And more people are joining him.



posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 11:47 AM
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If he is putting money up then I can respect him for that, I think its a stupid publicity stunt... my first thought when I saw this originally was Warrik Dunn, that young man has been giving back since the day he signed his first contract.

Now most of my irritation revolves around the people telling me I have no right to be annoyed by his protest because its his first amendment right... then they start to rage when you point out the 1st only promises you the right to speak... it never says you have the right to be protected from any repercussions.

Those folks make me want to drink whiskey and climb a mountain to escape.

eta: He absolutely 100% has the right to protest how he wants to, and I will fight to the day I am dead and buried, for the his right to do so... doesnt mean I cant judge his protest as a stupid publicity stunt.
edit on 6-9-2016 by Irishhaf because: additional thought



posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 12:00 PM
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originally posted by: theantediluvian
a reply to: Grambler

I've been mulling this over. I haven't had a lot of time to follow football the last couple years but hasn't Kaepernick's QB rating been in decline pretty much since he entered the league? I'm always a little skeptical of fading stars and publicity stunts.

Didn't I read that he switched from sitting to kneeling during the anthem out of respect for veterans and active military?


He is now a backup, close to being cut from the team. He also did kneel after talking to a former player who was a veteran that suggested that to him.




Not that I think anyone has an obligation to donate in order to have an opinion worth hearing (and I'm sure you'd agree) but I also think it's great to see somebody put their money where their mouth is.


Sure you don't have to donate. In fact, in a perfect world how likeable a person is would have no bearing on rather they make a good argument or not. I try to not take how much I like someone into account wehn analyzing their comments, but I am human.




Ironically, the rhetoric from "both sides" basically boils down to the government is oppressing black people. On the Left there's institutional racism and on the Right it's welfare dependency. Neither of these concepts adequately describes reality though I personally believe institutional racism comes closer. My problem with a lot of activism focused on racial equality (which I think we'll all agree tends to come almost exclusively from the Left) is that it's ineffective as there's no real strategy except "awareness."


No argument from me that both sides can be unreasonable. I disagree with the point about institutional racism, but I will get to that below. The thing I wanted to mention here though is that me and you, and many posters on ATS can disagree with each other without personally hating each other.



If we're being honest with ourselves, I doubt there are that many people who aren't aware that we have profound disparities. That's objective truth and so it's hard to deny. Beyond that is major disagreement as to the causes and solutions. I don't believe it's difficult to understand the origins as one has but to look at history.


You are right about the disparities. I want everyone to suceed in tis country, heck everyone in the entire world. No one should have to starve, live on the street, or live with the prospect of constant violence. We may disagree on the causes and solutions of these problems, but I think we should all want to see them fixed.



From slavery it was right into Jim Crow. I don't think many rational people would debate that Jim Crow laws were anything but oppression. Less discussed are similar laws (typically at the local level) and de facto oppression that existed in the North. Take a look at the rates of illiteracy in the table at the bottom of this source. In 1900, 4.6% of native born whites were illiterate compared to a whopping 44.5% of blacks and other non-whites and that was a marked improvement over nearly 80% illiterate in 1870. Follow the waves of migrations from the agrarian South in the first half of the 20th century to Rust Belt cities. Then consider that by the late 1950's, manufacturing was already starting to soften and then peak manufacturing hit in the mid-1970s. I don't want to derail this thread (or spend a tremendous amount of time on a single reply) but I invite everyone to take a moment some time to look up historic wage ratios, employment rates, etc.

It's really not that hard to see how we got to where we are today.


Its such a huge topic that it will be hard to discuss on this thread. Maybe I will make a thread on it when I get time, but here is a brief take I have on it.

Everything you say about the terrible treatment of black people in the history of this country are true. However, other groups have gone through similar treatment and are now doing much better.

More importantly, it seems as if blacks were doing better immediately prior to the war on poverty. Things like children born to single parent homes, violence, and poverty in the black community have increased significantly, while they had all been decreasing before the war on poverty. Why does it seem like people are more affected today by slavery and Jim Crow laws than they were by the generations that lived through them?

What are the laws that are racist today? Kaepernick claims this country is oppressing black people. If he would have said some police oppressed black people, that would be a little more palatable to me. Is he suggesting that Obama or the DOJ is oppressing black people? But even this ignores the fact that there is a lot of violent crime in some black communities, and these tend to be the areas where there are violent encounters between blacks and police. It also ignores the fact that in proportion to violent crime, whites are actually more likely to be shot by police.

But thats really not the point of this thread. I will try to go into more detail at a later date.


What to do now is the real question. Here again I think that both political sides intuitively know what the solution to racial inequality ultimately is — economic opportunity aka jobs — but it's not much of a solution given the trends in employment. Unfortunately, I haven't seen any of politicians on the national level addressing the sort of paradigm shift that will be required to fix the employment situation going forward. Tax subsidized college education and pipe dreams about "bringing back the jobs" are little more than empty campaign promises.


Here are some suggestions I have.

For the government

1. End the war on drugs.

2. Provide incentives for two parent households, while taking away incentives for single parenting.

3. Allow charter schools.

4. Treat all races equally in regards to making and enforcing laws.

And thats about it.

For the rest of us.

1. Try to avoid the divisive rhetoric and talk openly about the problems. This means having an honest conversation that discusses all sides of the issue while trying to maintain respect for everyone.

2. Not relying on the government to solve this problem.

3. Encourage a culture for everyone (because it is a problem for all races) that shows the importance of being a good and active parent.

4. Doing what we can personally to help people that live in these affected areas.

Thats just a start. But that is basically the point of my thread. We can all agree that there are problems, and if someone I disagree with about what causes or how to solve those problems is making some sort of personal effort to help out, then I like that effort.

That doesn't mean I am more inclined to agree with the person, but I just think that if we could all have an attitude of respecting peoples personal efforts we may find ourselves more capable of solving these problems.



posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 12:10 PM
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I wish someone would"Oppress"me for a salary of several million dollars a year.Is he a football player or political activist?If the latter why doesn't he do that on his time sparing his team's fans from this circus act?
edit on CDTTuepm21261 by TDawg61 because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 12:25 PM
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Oh look, another rich person of color is protesting the oppression of people of color.



posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 12:40 PM
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Funny ... so many responses alluding to Kaepernick's money (sure) or his status as a 1%er (not even close) ... while I've seen other comments made elsewhere here that a person's wealth is deserved by whatever means they achieved it not to mention the fact that in more than one case amassing wealth supposedly confers greater wisdom and understanding of the world ...

... unless that man happens to be Black and he is drawing attention to the injustice STILL BEING DONE DAILY to his people.

There is just no doubt in the minds of any rational person in this country that African Americans (and other minorities) are and have been treated unjustly and inequitably by our various governmental and economic systems both in the past and the present.

Also ironic is seeing so many comments about patriotism and respect for our country's traditions when I have seen other comments (again, made elsewhere here at ATS) that have done everything except call for open rebellion, and in some cases, even that. No respect for the Presidency (not merely the man holding the Office), for our traditions and values, condemnation of every act of government that doesn't merely satisfy someone's own short-sighted personal interests or that helps the needy or underprivileged ... who have whined and gnashed their teeth about freedom of speech being trampled on ... now want to spit on another man who is exercising his.

/shrug, sadly, par for the course these days.


edit on 6-9-2016 by Gryphon66 because: Noted



posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 01:50 PM
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originally posted by: uncommitted
a reply to: Grambler


If you don't think there are any racial issues in America - let's say disproportionate number of black people that appear to have been killed by some police (not suggesting it's through some government led initiative) - but other people do, then isn't that a discussion point? You seem very clear that you are right about this and he is wrong.... is that how we carry about a meaningful conversation?




No I think it is fine to have a conversation about the police and race. We are having that conversation now, but I feel like it is too often one sided (maybe not here on ATS but on the national level).

Its not that I feel I am right and he is wrong. I understand how he and many black people feel, and they have a right to speak on this. The police also have a right to speak on how they feel and we should listen to that. But I am less interested in feelings, and more interested in facts.

Eric Holder said the following in 2009;


"Though this nation has proudly thought of itself as an ethnic melting pot, in things racial we have always been and continue to be, in too many ways, essentially a nation of cowards," Holder declared.

Holder urged Americans of all races to use Black History Month as a time to have a forthright national conversation between blacks and whites to discuss aspects of race which are ignored because they are uncomfortable.


Ironically, he is right. This country is too cowardly o have an honest conversation about race. The problem is what Holder means by an honest conversation is only mentioning that blacks have been unfairly attacked by oppressors, and this is the conversation we see to be having nationally now.

There is no conversation about self responsibility for problems in the black community. Those conversations are considered racist, and shunned by the national narrative.

We need to be able to talk about all of the problems in the black community. Part of this is police interactions and biases, but a bigger part is the violence in these black communities.

For the record, it would be equally egregious for soeone to say that black brought this all on themselves. The truth is a complex mix of issues, and until all sides can freely speak the facts, the problem will not be solved.



posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 01:53 PM
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The money donation was insurance against getting cut. It was just one more "Ha ha, San Fran cuts me and they look like tyrants" move by him. In the end, he's donating $1 Million to secure an additional $13 Mil in salary versus getting cut and being paid $2 Million guaranteed.



posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 01:55 PM
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originally posted by: Boadicea
a reply to: Grambler



Talk is cheap, but this guy put his money where his mouth is, and he's walking the walk. And not for himself. I greatly respect and admire that. Is he perfect? Of course not. None of us are.

But I will ALWAYS side with the one standing for the sanctity of life over their opposition. And that's the biggest problem I have with this national dialogue. While I hear much in the way of threats and retaliation from law enforcement, what I don't hear is any respect for life at all, much less their responsibility to protect and preserve life. That's downright chilling to me.


I feel you, but it must be hard to be the police and to be constantly cast as a villain. Inevitably, human nature will mean they will argue back.

But actions do speak louder than words. I have seen police defend these people protesting them. I have seen these protestors run for cover in Dallas when shots were fired, and the police jump between them and the shooter. Police continue to go into neighborhoods where they are hated everyday and try to keep the peace. This speaks louder than words to me.

I am not saying all police are great, but lets not judge them too harshly for speaking out against groups that hate them.



posted on Sep, 6 2016 @ 02:00 PM
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a reply to: Martin75

TDawg61

Bone75

burdman30ott6

I understand you all don't like the guy. Maybe he is a hypocrite, maybe he just did this for publicity to not get cut. I also don't really care for the guy or his message.

But I just don't care. I hope every single person I dislike in this world tries to help out people that need it. I don't care if they do it for personal reasons. It is not going to make me like them anymore, but I can still respect the action.




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