On Saturday, former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick slammed Independence Day as a “celebration of white supremacy,” a far cry from the activist’s cheery July 4 post preceding his national anthem protests.
“Black [people] have been dehumanized, brutalized, criminalized [and] terrorized by America for centuries, [and] are expected to join your commemoration of ‘independence,’ while you enslaved our ancestors,” posted the Nike-sponsored multi-millionaire. “We reject your celebration of white supremacy [and] look forward to liberation for all.”
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. ✊🏾 pic.twitter.com/YCD2SYlgv4
— Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) July 4, 2020
Last year, Kaepernick intended to slam the U.S. by quoting American hero Fredrick Douglass: “What have I, or those I represent, to do with your national independence? This Fourth of July is yours, not mine…There is not a nation on the earth guilty of practices more shocking and bloody than are the people of these United States at this very hour.”
However, as noted by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Douglass was not anti-American, but challenged this nation to live up to her admirable ideals, as evidenced when you take the speech Kaepernick quoted into full context.
“Douglass was not anti-American; he was, rightly and passionately, anti-slavery,” highlighted Sen. Cruz. “Indeed, he concluded the speech as follows: ‘Allow me to say, in conclusion, notwithstanding the dark picture I have this day presented, of the state of the nation, I do not despair of this country. There are forces in operation, which must inevitably, work the downfall of slavery. ‘The arm of the Lord is not shortened,’ and the doom of slavery is certain. I, therefore, leave off where I began, with hope. While drawing encouragement from ‘the Declaration of Independence,’ the great principles it contains, and the genius of American Institutions, my spirit is also cheered by the obvious tendencies of the age.'”
“What have I, or those I represent, to do with your national independence? This Fourth of July is yours, not mine…There is not a nation on the earth guilty of practices more shocking and bloody than are the people of these United States at this very hour.”
– Frederick Douglass pic.twitter.com/IWLujGCJHn
— Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) July 4, 2019
And, similarly, in 2017, Kaepernick said he left the States to find his true “independence” at “home,” in Ghana.
“How can we truly celebrate independence on a day that intentionally robbed our ancestors of theirs? To find my independence I went home,” he captioned a video compilation of his trip.
How can we truly celebrate independence on a day that intentionally robbed our ancestors of theirs? To find my independence I went home. pic.twitter.com/hniYGJeLxG
— Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) July 4, 2017
However, back in 2011, July 4 was not a “white supremacist” holiday to the newly-drafted NFL player.
“Happy 4th of july everyone I hope everyone has a blessed day,” he wrote via Twitter.
Happy 4th of july everyone I hope everyone has a blessed day
— Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) July 4, 2011
Some online compared Kaepernick’s July 4 posts, noting that he became the starting QB for the 49ers during the 2012 NFL season, a position he eventually lost.
“Before and after getting benched for Blaine Gabbart,” conservative writer Stephen L. Miller captioned screenshots of the athlete’s July 4 posts, side-by-side.
Before and after getting benched for Blaine Gabbart. pic.twitter.com/JX2No4sysk
— Stephen L. Miller (@redsteeze) July 5, 2020
“Colin Kaepernick REALLY loved America back before he started to REALLY SUCK at football,” said commentator Tim Young.
Colin Kaepernick REALLY loved America back before he started to REALLY SUCK at football. https://t.co/Y4Y2GWSVwf
— Tim Young (@TimRunsHisMouth) July 5, 2020
Daily Wire writer Ryan Saavedra noted, “Amazing how the 4th of July was magically not a racist white supremacist holiday when Obama was president.”
Amazing how the 4th of July was magically not a racist white supremacist holiday when Obama was president https://t.co/qiWydl8Z2E
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) July 5, 2020
Kaepernick’s high-profile social justice activism has included repeated criticism of the United States, “including at one point favorably comparing the oppressive communist regime of Fidel Castro to the U.S.,” The Daily Wire previously noted.
The athlete has also notably donned socks with pigs wearing cop hats and “retweeted a quote from revolutionary socialist and chairman of the violence-embracing Black Panther Party Fred Hampton warning against the evils of capitalism.”
The transformation from athlete to racial activist was sparked in 2016 when Kaepernick, who was starting to see little field time, announced his polarizing anthem protest.
“People of color have been targeted by police,” Kaepernick said at the start of his protest. “So that’s a large part of it, and they’re government officials. They are put in place by the government. So that’s something that this country has to change. There’s things we can do to hold them more accountable. Make those standards higher. You have people that practice law and are lawyers and go to school for eight years, but you can become a cop in six months and don’t have to have the same amount of training as a cosmetologist.”
The Daily Wire, headed by bestselling author and popular podcast host Ben Shapiro, is a leading provider of conservative news, cutting through the mainstream media’s rhetoric to provide readers with the most important, relevant, and engaging stories of the day. Get inside access to The Daily Wire by becoming a member.