Documentary 'Kaepernick & America' Revisits Former Quarterback's 2016 Protests

Documentary ‘Kaepernick & America’ Revisits Former Quarterback’s 2016 Protests

Colin Kaepernick
Colin Kaepernick (Image: Colin Kaepernick's Facebook account)

The new documentary Kaepernick & America revisits former San Francisco 49er Colin Kaepernick‘s police brutality protests.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, he began protesting in 2016 after the death of Philando Castile by the Minneapolis-St. Paul police.

The film directed by Ross Hockrow and Tommy Walker notes that most people didn’t notice Kaepernick protesting until he was joined by former San Francisco 49er Eric Reid. Kaepernick refused to stand for the national anthem as his way of protesting the brutalization of Black people in the country. After being told by a veteran Kaepernick was offending the military by not standing, he took the veteran’s advice and opted to kneel for the anthem as a token of respect.

Despite his graciousness, mobs of mostly white NFL fans and conservative politicians quickly turned on the quarterback. Fans burned his jersey on social media and called him “un-American.” He was also blackballed from playing in the NFL and to this day has not been signed to a football team.

The Hollywood Reporter recently reviewed the film and said it was the type of film that many Americans use to soothe racial anxiety.

Kaepernick & America frequently feels like a hagiography of a man whose name and likeness have become symbolic with protesting anti-Black violence — the kind of film Americans use to soothe their racial anxieties… Before Kaepernick took a knee, he was already undergoing extensive scrutiny as a promising Black quarterback. The coded language from excerpted news clips suggests a general skepticism toward his presence and skills.”

Regardless of the NFL, Kaepernick is still a busy man and produced a Netflix series about his upbringing called Colin in Black & White in 2021. He’s also written a children’s book, I Color Myself Different about being bi-racial. Kaepernick also began a publishing company and has a new graphic novel “CHANGE THE GAME” being released next year.