Do We Have Freedom of Speech?

I was listening to the commentary of Shaun King the other morning on the TJMS Show. His commentary was very powerful and thought provoking. He was expressing his dismay and disappointment with the National football League (NFL) and their treatment of a young Black quarterback by the name of, Colin Kaepernick. Kaepernick chose to kneel down during the National Anthem rather than standing. This was in support of Black Lives Matter. King noted that everyone was not in agreement with Kaepernick’s stance on the issue, but this bold move took bravery despite the pressure he was receiving. It took courage to continue his stance when it appeared all the world was turning against him to abandon his protest.

He was called unpatriotic, trader, divisive, and any other ugly name you can think of; yet, he remained vigilant to what he believed. The end result is—He appears to be blacklisted by the NFL. King further stated, Kaepernick has been an exemplary and outstanding quarterback during his time with the San Francisco 49ers, but his contract has not been renewed and he has not been picked up by any other team. His words struck a nerve in me. I was very disappointed to hear this because I believe in freedom of speech as it states in our constitution. This is one of the principles we say our country was founded upon; however, this does not appear to be true in Kaepernick’s case. Apparently, what we mean by freedom of speech is, only if the majority agrees with it; or as long as those in power don’t disagree. If this is the case are we really any better than the countries we call civil rights violators? At the end of Shaun King’s commentary he indicated he plans to boycott the NFL by not watching any of the games this season unless Colin Kaepernick is re-hired with one of the NFL teams. I am an avid fan of the NFL, but I was so moved by King’s action that I plan to participate with him in this boycott. I believe Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr once said, “If we don’t stand for something, we’ll fall for anything.” I think this is something worth standing for. I hope those of you reading this post will join in with me in support of Colin Kaepernick and fight for real “Freedom of speech.” This one’s for you Colin Kaepernick!!!

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