Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick denounced the 4th of July celebrations in a tweet that included a video he sent out last year.
He posted a video showing images of police brutality, Ku Klux Klan, lynchings and slavery, with the caption: “Black ppl have been dehumanized, brutalized, criminalized + terrorized by America for centuries, & are expected to join your commemoration of ‘independence,’ while you enslaved our ancestors. We reject your celebration of white supremacy & look forward to liberation for all.”
The images showed against a backdrop of fireworks and the voice of actor James Earl Jones reading the 19th-century abolitionist Frederick Douglass’ 1852 speech, "What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?"
32-year-old Kaepernick began kneeling during the national anthem before the NFL games in 2016 in protest of racial inequality and police brutality against African Americans. He became a free agent after his contract with 49ers expired in 2017.
He hasn’t been signed since, sparking allegations that the league was blackballing him. Last month, however, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell stated that he was encouraging teams to consider signing him.
"I welcome that," Goodell said.
As Black Lives Matter continues holding protests across the country after the May 25 killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police officers, a deeper conversation about equality, race, and American history has been sparked in the country.