Free-agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick hasn’t been afraid to question American traditions, so it makes sense for him to ditch typical Fourth of July festivities.
The former San Francisco 49er’s outspokenness about Black oppression extended to a tweet he made on Independence Day, where he questioned how Black Americans can “celebrate on a day that intentionally robbed our ancestors of theirs?”
How can we truly celebrate independence on a day that intentionally robbed our ancestors of theirs? To find my independence I went home. pic.twitter.com/hniYGJeLxG
— Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) July 4, 2017
Kaepernick made the trip with his girlfriend, Hot 97 DJ Nessa Diab, and the charitable pair received a warm welcome. The clip opens with the following lines from the Fredrick Douglass’ 1852 speech, “What to the Slave Is the Fourth of July?”
“What have I or those I represent to do with your national independence?” a narrator says as the camera cuts to the male and female dungeons at Elmina Castle, where enslaved Ghanaians were tortured.
Kaepernick and Diab also visited Keta Municipal Hospital’s children’s ward and watched performances by the local community. Kaepernick also wasn’t afraid to get his hands dirty while assisting women with gathering building materials.
The athlete has been heavily focusing on charity work since he launched his national anthem protest at the start of the 2016 NFL season. Immediately, backlash followed and since Kaepernick opted out of his contract with the 49ers in March, he has remained unsigned. Many have speculated his politics have been the cause of his ongoing free agency.