San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick became a center of controversy when he opted out of participating in the National Anthem to protest racial injustice. Though the critics were vocal, Kaepernick is getting more support than anticipated.
Kaerpernick's $99 jersey was the top-selling jersey on the 49ers' online store and fifth top-selling jersey on the NFL's online store. According to Seattle Times reporter Mike Rosenberg, Kaepernick's jersey was only in the number 20 spot weeks before the controversy.
The quarterback carried out the protest before the media's attention, then gave an interview after the initial story swept the nation. There, Kaepernick said that he has an enormous amount of respect for service members, and that their sacrifices allowed him to take the stance that he did:
I have family, I have friends that have gone and fought for this country. They fight for freedom. They fight for the people, they fight for liberty and justice for everyone. And that's not happening. People are dying in vain because this country isn't holding their end of the bargain up, as far as giving freedom and justice, liberty to everybody. It's something that's not happening. I've seen videos. I've seen circumstances where men and women that have been in the military have come back and been treated unjustly by the country they fought for and have been murdered by the country they fought for, on our land. That's not right.
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