Colin Kaepernick hasn’t played for the NFL in over three years. After peacefully protesting by kneeling during the national anthem in 2016, he, according to many reports, was banned from the NFL. Since the killing of George Floyd, among many others, by police – which is precisely what the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback was demonstrating against – the NFL has taken a sharp 180 in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter Movement.
On June 5, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell issued an apology about the league’s attempts at quelling peaceful protest. He made no mention of Kaepernick.
However, LeBron James believes the NFL needs to go a step further and directly apologize to Kaepernick.
During a June 25 interview with Bloomberg Businessweek, the NBA star, alongside his longtime business partner Maverick Carter, said that while the NFL has made progress in accepting protests against racial injustice, Kaepernick still deserves an apology.
“As far as the NFL, I’m not in those locker rooms, I’m not with those guys, but I do understand that an apology — I have not heard a true, official apology to Colin Kaepernick on what he was going through and what he was trying to tell the NFL and tell the world about why he was kneeling when he was doing that as a San Francisco 49er,” said James.
“I just see that to still be wrong. Now they are listening some, but I still think we have not heard that official apology to a man who basically sacrificed everything for the better of this world.”
Maverick Carter also added, “Colin Kaepernick did what was on his heart. He did what he felt was right. He took all the right steps. “People always look over that he met with [former Green Beret Nate Boyer] that told him sitting was the wrong thing to do, that he should kneel. That’s actually where he got the idea.”
He continued, “As Black people, we’ve been ringing this alarm for a long time, and the rest of the country — I happen to believe most people are good, so who are not even racists — has been hitting snooze on it. The system has been set up in a way that even if you’re not racist, you still perpetuate a system that oppresses Black people.”
The closest thing to an apology Kaep has received has been an undisclosed settlement with the NFL over his collusion grievance against the league.
Colin Kaepernick is still a free agent and has expressed to return to the NFL. Reports say that some teams are interested in giving him a workout.
Watch a segment of Bloomberg’s interview with LeBron James and Maverick Carter below.
(Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)