Over the weekend, former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick was awarded Amnesty International‘s highest honour, the Ambassador of Conscience Award, for his protests against racial injustice. The title “celebrates individuals and groups who speak out for justice” and stated Kaepernick “chooses to speak out and inspire others despite the professional and personal risks”.
Kaepernick first protested by sitting during the national anthem in August 2016, before opting to kneel instead. Soon more players followed suit which sparked criticism from President Donald Trump. Amnesty International’s secretary general Salil Shetty described Kaepernick as “an athlete who is now widely recognised for his activism because of his refusal to ignore or accept racial discrimination. Kaepernick’s commitment is all the more remarkable because of the alarming levels of vitriol it has attracted from those in power.”
During his acceptance speech, Kaepernick stated, “While taking a knee is a physical display that challenges the merits of who is excluded from the notion of freedom, liberty, and justice for all, the protest is also rooted in a convergence of my moralistic beliefs, and my love for the people.” Kaepernick has been without a team since he opted out of his contract with San Francisco in March 2017.
In case you’ve missed it, we sat down with Pharrell Williams during Super Bowl LII to discuss how his adidas “LIBERTY + JUSTICE” cleats are honoring NFL players.
We are honored to present this year’s #AmbassadorOfConscience Award to Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7). Colin embodies the true spirit of activism. Thank you, Colin, for refusing to accept racial discrimination and injustice. pic.twitter.com/T9x6MP9unA
— AmnestyInternational (@amnestyusa) 2018年4月21日
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