Colin Kaepernick’s protest during the National Anthem was supposed to be about fighting injustice in the world and it wasn’t supposed to be about money, but in the end, it sure looks like it was. The NFL settled out of court on Friday for an undisclosed amount and also got an agreement where neither side can speak of the matter again. So did Kaepernick really win?
Sure, he got a lot of money and my initial thought was that he won and made the NFL look bad, but the chance to truly expose the backroom dealings of the NFL owners and their desire to keep the former anthem protester off the NFL’s sidelines was basically lost with the settlement.
The NFL settling does show that collusion was probably happening, or why else settle? But Kaepernick had a chance to blow the lid off of one of the most corrupt corporations in the world and instead he reached an agreement. If you don’t believe that the NFL is corrupt take a look at how they hold cities up for new taxpayer funded stadiums or maybe look at the NFL’s treatment of retired players, and how once you are no longer of use to the NFL they basically just forget about you.
Then you have the constitutional right to free speech, and before you go there, I know that as a private company the NFL can demand players to act and do certain things but what a lot of people fail to realize is that in the last CBA there was no mention of players standing for the National Anthem. If you look at the NBA they put in their CBA in the mid-late 90’s that all players must stand during the National Anthem and they have no issue with this situation.
This is a league that has fought Tom Brady over deflated footballs, but when things were about to get serious the NFL tapped out of the Kaepernick case–better to save face than to have all of your dirty secrets revealed in public. Clearly, the NFL wanted to hide what happened, or again, there would have been no settlement.
The sad part is that owners never realized the quickest way to make this situation go away would have been for an NFL team to sign Kaepernick immediately, because when all was said and done the protests have all but gone away. The media kept this story going because of NFL teams’ reluctance to sign a Quarterback who just a few years earlier led the 49ers to the Super Bowl.
Sure Kaepernick won and the NFL looks bad, but it would have been great to see what goes on behind the scenes at the Billionaires Boys Club. Sadly, it looks like we will likely never know.