After the recent killing of George Floyd, a forgotten figure of the Black Lives Matter movement came back into the limelight: Colin Kaepernick. The former starting quarterback of the San Francisco 49ers became a darling of the BLM crowd by taking a knee during the playing of the National Anthem (and for wearing socks depicting police officers as pigs) to protest the killing of black people by police. At the time, he was praised and criticized and now it seems he was ahead of the curve, even though he was riding the pine at his former job for sucking.
With Kaepernick’s reemergence, Leftists are coming out and saying we owe him an apology, a starting quarterback position, and back pay. There are people making as much on two knees as Kaepernick could make on one, and what he’s doing won’t get you arrested! But is he worth the accolades? Let’s take a look.
What the Left thinks it means – an early hero of Black Lives Matter who was blackballed by the NFL for his stance on police brutality
What it really means – a quarterback whose skills have been overshadowed by his advocacy
When he started, Colin Kaepernick was a one-of-a-kind quarterback. He was able to lead the 49ers to a handful of NFC championship games and an appearance in the Super Bowl, where he lead the team to a disheartening loss to the Baltimore Ravens (which just happens to be your humble correspondent’s favorite football team). After that, he experienced either a decline in his skills, defenses started figuring out his tendencies and exploited them to their benefit, or his offense wasn’t as potent as it was when he was successful. As a result, he wasn’t as effective as he once was and lost his starting quarterback position, even though he felt he had the skills to play as a starter.
This is where things get a little controversial. Kaepernick started dating a woman in the off season who turned him from a mediocre-starting-quarterback to a mediocre-former-starting-quarterback-with-a-cause. And out of that cause came a lot of trouble for him and headaches for the NFL. After he tried to test the free agency market and came up empty, allegations of his being blackballed flew around like errant passes from Kaepernick.
Was he blackballed? Not really. He insisted he was a top-tier talent without the numbers to back it up, and he refused to accept a back-up quarterback position. Oh, and there was the attitude problems and controversial statements supporting Fidel Castro…while he was trying to get a job with the Miami Dolphins. I will say this. What Kaepernick lacked in reading the room, he more than made up in positive press coverage. To say he became more beloved by people who would normally consider football barbaric (and, to be fair, anything short of checkers is too barbaric for the Left) would be an understatement.
And that’s how he’s made his money since deciding not to play football (i.e. when no NFL team would sign him because, well, he’s a PR nightmare in crappy socks). He’s become a professional victim, even though his ego/stupidity made him a victim in the first place. Since he’s involved in a Leftist cause, however, his defenders will overlook the obvious flaws in his story of victimhood. After all, there are black people being shot by police all the time, right? Wellll…that’s not strictly true. Crime statistics show police most often shoot…white criminals. And it’s not always white cops doing the killing, either. Thanks to diversity (something the Left claims to embrace), police departments have officers of various races. In fact, only 2 of the police officers involved in the George Floyd matter were white.
None of this diminishes the fact far too many people are getting killed by police officers, regardless of race. Nor does it excuse the racism evident in some police departments. These are real issues that fuel the division in this country and acts as justification for all sides to distrust each other. If we are make any headway, we have to call out the bad faith actors and praise those who are upholding the best in people.
And that’s why I’m calling out Colin Kaepernick and his Leftist enablers. I know the perfect is the enemy of the good, but Kaepernick is neither. He took advantage of a bad situation to create a new job opportunity for himself when his job at the time wasn’t working out the best and his options were as limited as his ability to evolve as a quarterback. And I’m guessing he hasn’t improved on his existing skill set during his extended off-season. Even though his cause has gained traction, it wasn’t because of him. If anything, it occurred without his presence being necessary. Although the Left can remember the glory days of him taking a knee, the truth remains he was merely a replaceable cog in an already existing machine.
As far as his Leftist enablers go, he doesn’t deserve back pay, a starting quarterback job, or an apology because he hasn’t earned any of it. He hasn’t played for a few years because no team would sign him. That’s not the NFL’s fault, but it is Kaepernick’s fault for not realizing his limitations. If he could play like he did prior to the Super Bowl he lost and shown he has a more level head than he did before taking a knee, there are teams right now who could use a good quarterback or at least someone who could do a good job mentoring the next generation of quarterbacks. And if football was no longer an option, he has a degree in business management that he could use…or is he using it right now to leverage his self-imposed victimhood into a lucrative, albeit somewhat dishonest, career?
In other words, Colin Kaepernick is playing Leftists for fools so he can enrich himself, and if Leftists have their way, he will succeed. But, hey, at least they’re “woke”.