Colin took his first kneel during the playing of the National Anthem sometime in the early fall of 2017, about a year ago. I thought he was appropriately exercising his right of free speech, and wrote some pieces that I posted here.
Lot of controversy has since arisen – no reason for it in my view, especially when a person’s invoking one of his primary rights in this country, the right of free speech. Without further adieu, I again post what I said then in one piece, especially now that I’ve reviewed issues that have been raised and I still believe what I said then was right, and it remains right.
In a recent post on 09/25/2017, quoting from a couple posts of mine in the fall of 2016, I applauded Colin Kaepernick for his exercise of his right of free speech. I’ve had a few further thoughts that I should pass on, not only in support of Colin for his exercise of his right, but for his choice of medium; and last, but not least, and most important, the content of his message.
Colin chose not to stand for the national anthem. That is not contrary to law, but consistent with law as it is a communication and in this country one always has the “right of free speech.” I again applaud him in the exercise of his right, but also in the way he has chosen to exercise it.
The “right” has as an incident that a person not only has the right to speak, but whatever he or she says may be ignored by all potential listeners. To me, that says one has the “right,” but the incontrovertible incident is that one has “to get his message across.”
Colin could have spoken one sentence to one reporter, or he could have stood on a street corner and made a speech, or could just have whispered his message to all the passers-by at that street corner. Colin has learned that “to get your message across,” one often must do it in a manner that at least will get the message out there and listened to. In other words, Colin chose to make some waves and some controversy, and again, I applaud him for his choice of medium for his communication.
He seems to have really hit a nerve. It’s not the first time on this earth that someone has expressed a thought via a medium or in a manner that didn’t get much support from the listeners, but rather the opposite, just resistance, outrage, and defense; but in my view, it should really be directed to, and thought about in, the content of his message.
And as to the content of his message, here’s my message. Hey, gang, you haven’t been living and paying much attention to what’s going on in this US of A in the past year+ if you don’t know that too many African-Americans have lost their lives where there appears no substantial reason for the death that’s been caused.
I think Colin is doing none other than emphasizing this. I think he’s not indicting all police departments and all police officers. After all, he’s played quarterback in the NFL and he knows it’s most difficult to call ’em and throw ’em all right, and he just wants to see things move along in a better way, especially making sure lives are not given up or taken in vein. After all, isn’t that one of the primary beauties of our country – that your life, no matter who you are, where you come from, or what you do – hey, it’s not just worth something, it has a special meaning, standing and sense.
I think Colin is mindful of those that have died to give him and us all that “right of free speech.” Perhaps those that have done so would say to Colin: “I am proud that I have helped give you the “right,” but even prouder that you have chosen to exercise it, especially in circumstances where you know you may face some substantial controversy, but you are using it so as to make this country better, so keep at it.”
Lastly, and I say this for Colin Kaepernick, and hope he agrees that America finally gets and hears the message he is singing, perhaps in a different key, but not without a different meaning, “We Shall Overcome Some Day.”