Colin Kaepernick’s refusal to stand up during the national anthem has unleashed a barrage of criticism, including from Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, who advised the San Francisco 49ers quarterback to “find a new country.”
The latest bout of outrage came from the Santa Clara police union whose members recently issued an ultimatum to the 49ers to take action against their player, otherwise “it could result in police officers choosing not to work at your facilities.”
However, as opposition to Kaepernick’s stand against racial injustice is gathering steam, so is the support.
After fellow football players, including 49ers Eric Reid and Seattle Seahawks’ Jeremy Lane, joined the protest by not standing up for "The Star-Spangled Banner" last week, U.S. women’s soccer star Megan Rapinoe has also expressed solidarity with Kaepernick.
Before the Seattle Reign's game against the Chicago Red Stars, Rapinoe took a knee during the national anthem as “a little nod” to the NFL player.
It's the least I can do. Keep the conversation going. https://t.co/qwfHcqgV6J— Megan Rapinoe (@mPinoe) September 5, 2016
After the match, the 31-year-old soccer star, who is openly gay, explained how she can relate to Kaepernick’s cause:
"Being a gay American, I know what it means to look at the flag and not have it protect all of your liberties,” she told American Soccer Now. “It was something small that I could do and something that I plan to keep doing in the future and hopefully spark some meaningful conversation around it. It's important to have white people stand in support of people of color on this. We don't need to be the leading voice, of course, but standing in support of them is something that's really powerful."
Rapinoe helped the U.S. win the World Cup last year and also participated in the 2016 Rio Olympics.