NFL Star Sits During National Anthem Over Apparent Protest of Police Brutality

Colin Kaepernick; Photo: Ben Margot/AP

Colin Kaepernick; Photo: Ben Margot/AP

San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick sat during the National Anthem of Friday evening's pre-season football game against the Green Bay Packers, drawing the ire of football fans throughout the nation.

Speaking after the game, Kaepernick alluded to racial discrimination and the unfair treatment of law enforcement against communities of color as his reason for not showing respect for the American flag.

"I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color. 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," said Kaepernick.

The San Francisco 49ers quickly released a statement of their own, stating, "The national anthem is and always will be a special part of the pre-game ceremony. It is an opportunity to honor our country and reflect on the great liberties we are afforded as its citizens. In respecting such American principles as freedom of religion and freedom of expression, we recognize the right of an individual to choose and participate, or not, in our celebration of the national anthem."

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