Kaepernick has done a lot for African American community and it has cost him: Serena

first_imgSerena Williams came out in support of Nike and former National Football League (NFL) quarterback Colin Kaepernick after the company faced severe backlash for unveiling Kaepernick as their face for the new advertising campaign.Kaepernick had sparked a national controversy after becoming the first NFL player to kneel during the national anthem as a protest police killings of black men and other issues related to racism. Following his move, the entire previous season of NFL was laden with such protests.Following the entire controversy, Kaepernick, who was a quarterback with the San Francisco 49ers for six years, was not offered a place on any NFL team for the 2017 season. He has since sued the NFL, accusing owners of colluding to blackball him and is still without a team.Since the release of Nike advertisement, protesters have burned Nike shoes and some consumers demanded a boycott while the company’s shares fell on Tuesday, closing down 3.2 percent.Also read – US Open: Serena reaches semi-finals, defending champion Stephens oustedOn Tuesday after Nike’s unveiling, Serena Williams had taken to Twitter to say she was “especially proud to be a part of the Nike family” for choosing Kaepernick as their face.Especially proud to be a part of the Nike family today. #justdoit pic.twitter.com/GAZtkAIwbkSerena Williams (@serenawilliams) September 4, 2018After her straight sets victory over Karolina Pliskova in the US Open quarter-finals, Serena once again opened up on the issue and said Kaepernick’s works for the African American community has cost him.advertisement”He’s done a lot for the African American community, and it’s cost him a lot. It’s sad,” Serena told reporters.”Having a huge company back him … could be a controversial reason for this company, but they’re not afraid. I feel like that was a really powerful statement to a lot of other companies.”Both Williams and Kaepernick have endorsement deals with Nike.In an on-court interview after her match, Williams was told that film director Spike Lee, who watched her on Tuesday, had compared her to fellow African American sporting icons Muhammad Ali and Michael Jordan.Former heavyweight champion Ali, who died in 2016, was known as much for his political activism as his boxing brilliance, speaking out racism, war and religious intolerance.”To be compared to Ali or Jordan, I really have no words,” Williams said. “Mainly Ali, because he did so much for the sport, he did so much for the world, for everyone.”That’s what I want to do and want to be remembered for.”It’s not what I want to do on court, but how I can inspire people off the court, that’s my dream.”Took my niece to see @serenawilliams and @venuswilliams play tonight with @E_Reid35 at Arthur Ashe stadium.Lani lost it when Serena surprised her after the match!!!Thank you so much Serena!!! pic.twitter.com/MpR2KOSU1VColin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) September 1, 2018US President Donald Trump has been critical of athletes taking a knee during the national anthem and has said he would love to see NFL owners fire football players who disrespect the American flag.In fact, soon after the release of the Nike advertisement, Trump said to The Daily Caller, “I think as far as sending a message, I think it’s a terrible message and a message that shouldn’t be sent [from Nike]. There’s no reason for it.”Williams said in her post-match interview that athletes should be given the freedom of choice to exercise their right to protest social injustice.”I feel like they can choose or they can not choose. And it’s their choice,” she said.”My choice is to choose to just be the best, try to be, I’m not always perfect. Actually I’m never perfect. Just try to be the best that I can be.”Maybe I can just influence one person, and that makes a change already.”The NFL released a statement on Colin Kaepernick on Tuesday, a day after corporate partner Nike unveiled an ad featuring the quarterback as part of a major ad campaign.”The National Football League believes in dialogue, understanding and unity,” president of communications and public affairs Jocelyn Moore said in the statement. “We embrace the role and responsibility of everyone involved with this game to promote meaningful, positive change in our communities. The social justice issues that Colin and other professional athletes have raised deserve our attention and action.”Kaepernick posted a black-and-white close-up of himself on Instagram and Twitter on Monday featuring the Nike logo and “Just do it” slogan along with the quote, “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.”advertisementBelieve in something, even if it means sacrificing everything. #JustDoIt pic.twitter.com/SRWkMIDdaOColin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) September 3, 2018(With Reuters inputs)last_img