Over the weekend, San Francisco 49ers Quarterback, Colin Kaepernick’s refusal to stand during the singing of the National Anthem at the NFL game sparked a firestorm on social media that left him open to hate and plenty of criticism from the rest of the world. Not to mention, Kaepernick’s peers who had a variety of opinions on how the QB “should have handled the situation,” implying that his peaceful protest was wrong. However, most recently NFL Hall of Famer, Jerry Rice, stepped into the line of fire and was dragged to bits on Twitter after tweeting sentiments such as, “All lives matter” and telling Kaepernick not to be disrespectful towards the flag.
On late Monday night, Rice got more than he bargained for when he tweeted, “All lives matter. So much going on in this world today. Can we all just get along! Colin, I respect your stance but don’t disrespect the Flag.” Apparently, the tweet struck a cord with some Kaepernick’s supporters. Which in turn caused them to respond with a barrage of their criticisms of Rice, suggesting him to be a placater too concerned with straddling the line of political correctness to take a firm stance.
Although Kaepernick has yet to address the opinions of his peers directly, he made his stance very clear last Sunday in a statement to NFL Media: "I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color." He said, "To me, this is bigger than football, and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder."
In addition to Kaepernick receiving backlash for not standing for the flag, Gabby Douglas was accused of similar “disrespect” earlier in the month while competing in the 31st Olympic Games and winning gold for Team USA.
Check out tweets in the gallery above. Do you think there are double standards or unspoken rules of conduct that minority players have to abide by versus their majority counterparts?