By: Erica M. Ponder

Colin Kaepernick of the San Francisco 49ers has received a lot of backlash for refusing to stand for the National Anthem, including from some of his ex-teammates. Before a preseason loss to Green Bay, Kaepernick explained his reason for deciding to take a stand.

According to, Kaepernick 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… 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.”

The 49ers issued a statement in response to Kaepernick’s decision: “The National Anthem is and always will be a special part of the pre-game ceremony. It is an opportunity to honor our country and reflect on the great liberties we are afforded as its citizens. In respecting such American principles as freedom of religion and freedom of expression, we recognize the right of an individual to choose and participate, or not, in our celebration of the national anthem.”

Although Kaepernick’s decision has received a lot of flack, we commend him for his bravery.

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