Not Okay With What Colin Kaepernick Is Doing, But Okay That He Is Doing It
Bear with me on this. I’ve been holding back a lot of Clinton/Trump frustration and popping off on this may keep me from popping off about our future American President. At least until one of them becomes the sitting American President.
NFL Quarterback Colin Kaepernick did something I think is stupid, and I do not fully understand why. I hear the words that are coming out of his mouth, but ‘meh.’ He says he will continue to do the same thing I think is stupid until…things change.
The things he would like to see changed may take a while. And Colin Kaepernick is getting hammered for doing that thing I think is stupid.
Like Colin Kaepernick, I felt compelled to point out a few things today. Any response of any type can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org, as I don’t have a billion dollar organization handling my PR.
Point #1: This is what it is, and it is as it should be. You have the right to an opinion, and a right to protest against actions of this country, assuming your protest brings no more than a workable inconvenience to others around you.
Point #2: People in uniform deal with it every day. They are often not very happy about it, but they deal with it. That is why the ‘You need me on that wall…” line from A Few Good Men is so powerful.
Point #3: I am not happy about it, and despite being lackluster, my military brat upbringing and my military career provided a perspective that can not be easily expressed from the pure study of history and free speech. In the United States, ideas and ideals can be unpopular, but no one is being rounded up and hunted down (in full view of the public) because of a belief. Legal, illegal, rational, or flat out evil.
Point #4: Colin Kaepernick was physically and mentally equipped to make it through college and play professional football. The opinion people in sports once herald him as the future of his sport, and now can not throw out the word ‘garbage’ enough. Colin Kaepernick still has a job (barely) in professional football, and still has a platform greater than most of us here on our social media. It doesn’t stop him from doing something moronic and using said platform as a motivation.
Point #5: You have a platform, and thanks to social media, your platform can be broadcast to an international audience…or a handful or people who haven’t gotten around to muting your profile. Some of that is due to Point #2, some of that just the weird world of today’s technology. Feel free to use your platform to promote whatever agenda you wish, short of laying a hand on my family and friends. If I choose to listen or ignore, it should make little difference. I spent a little over five years equipping people on missions to make sure you can keep on keeping on. I mostly drank bad coffee.
Point #6: The United States of America has lived through good and bad history, is living through some good and bad present, and will experience some good and bad future. But despite being coined by a Canadian Professional Wrestler, the fact remains that ‘Merica is far and away the best there is, the best there was, the best there ever will be as far as a country and government. Oh, we got problems, but we got millions of citizens within our borders working on solutions. We’ll get better.
Point #7: It’s spelled ‘KAEPERNICK.’
J Cleveland Payne is a writer that wishes he was more famous. You can help him reach his desired level of fame by reading his writing here on Medium, at the Your Better You Project, or his personal blog at jclevelandpayne.net. Like everyone else on the internet, you can find him on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.