The NFL’s Colin Kaepernick became a free agent because his team, the San Francisco 49ers, were tired of subsidizing an All-Pro social justice warrior who was a second-rate quarterback. Now, he’s not having much luck finding a new team willing to hire him, and a recent article by Bleacher Report suggested that fear of a tweet from President Donald Trump had something to do with that.
At Monday night’s rally in Louisville, Kentucky, Trump gave his response to that idea, and it definitely wasn’t what Kaepernick and his supporters wanted to hear.
“There was an article today that was reported that NFL owners don’t want to pick him up because they don’t want to get a nasty tweet from Donald Trump. Do you believe that?” Trump said, according to The Hill.
“I said, ‘If I remember that one, I’m going to report it to the people of Kentucky because they like it when people stand for the American flag,’ right?”
That drew applause from the crowd.
The Bleacher Report article Friday reported statements by an AFC general manager that fear of a backlash from the president or his supporters has played a small role in Kaepernick not being signed because of his protests last season when the national anthem was played before 49ers games.
“First, some teams genuinely believe that he can’t play. They think he’s shot. I’d put that number around 20 percent,” the anonymous NFL executive said.
“Second, some teams fear the backlash from fans after getting him. They think there might be protests or Trump will tweet about the team. I’d say that number is around 10 percent. Then there’s another 10 percent that has a mix of those feelings.
“Third, the rest genuinely hate him and can’t stand what he did (kneeling for the national anthem),” the source continued. “They want nothing to do with him. They won’t move on. They think showing no interest is a form of punishment. I think some teams also want to use Kaepernick as a cautionary tale to stop other players in the future from doing what he did.”
As much hubbub as this might have generated, let’s not forget what this is all about. Kaepernick exercised his right to free speech — a right of every American. What his supporters want — and what no one is entitled to — is consequence-free speech.
The president isn’t the only American who is offended by what Kaepernick did. It is Kaepernick’s right to protest, of course, but it’s also America’s right to boycott the NFL or any team Kaepernick plays for. And that includes the president, whether Kaepernick likes it or not.
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H/T SB Nation