On Monday morning, GQ Magazine named former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick “Citizen of the Year.”
Among the magazine’s “men of the year,” Kaepernick took a distinct honor and was featured on the magazine cover.
Three other “new American heroes” were profiled by the magazine, as well.
A great deal of the profile commends Kaepernick for being so quiet. “Why talk now,” the article asks, “when detractors will only twist your words?”
From GQ Magazine:
He’s been vilified by millions and locked out of the NFL—all because he took a knee to protest police brutality. But Colin Kaepernick’s determined stand puts him in rare company in sports history: Muhammad Ali, Jackie Robinson—athletes who risked everything to make a difference […]
But Colin also made it clear to us that he intended to remain silent. As his public identity has begun to shift from football star to embattled activist, he has grown wise to the power of his silence. It has helped his story go around the world. It has even provoked the ire and ill temper of Donald Trump. Why talk now, when your detractors will only twist your words and use them against you? Why speak now, when silence has done so much?
Kaepernick made news last year by repeatedly sitting out the National Anthem. He told NFL.com’s Steve Wyche that he refused to stand because he didn’t want to show pride in “a flag for a country that oppresses black people.”
“I am not going to stand up,” Kaepernick said, “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.”
— GQ Magazine (@GQMagazine) November 13, 2017
Kaepernick later started kneeling, rather than sitting, during the National Anthem. So began a trend that has since defined the NFL (much to the chagrin of many fans).
He also made a point to wear socks depicting police officers as pigs at a game. He claimed the pigs represented “rogue cops,” according to the LA Times.
He’s been an unsigned free agent after last season, and his decision not to stand for the National Anthem or the flag during games has apparently made him the “citizen of the year.”
He’s currently accusing the NFL of colluding against him to prevent him from being signed.
Fox News reports:
Kaepernick filed a grievance against the NFL last month, accusing the owners of colluding to keep him out of the league following his controversial decision to kneel during the national anthem last season.
The former 49ers QB became a free agent after last season and remains unsigned. The issue of national anthem protests has remained an issue for the league after some players continued to kneel this season.
In September, President Trump called for NFL teams to “fire” any players who protest the “The Star-Spangled Banner.”
Kaepernick first knelt for the anthem in the summer of 2016 before a preseason game, saying he was protesting racial injustice and violence by police officers against minorities.
Could GQ Magazine really think of no greater citizen than Colin Kaepernick?
Let us know what you think, and sound off in the comments section below.