Colin Kaepernick has a message for the people protesting the death of George Floyd: It’s not only within their right to fight back; it’s absolutely necessary.
Floyd, a Black man, died after a white Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin held his knee on his neck while Floyd laid on the ground and said he couldn’t breathe.
Kaepernick said remaining calm when similar situations occurred did nothing to keep Floyd alive, and other tactics must now be used.
“When civility leads to death revolting is the only logical reaction,” wrote Kaepernick on Thursday, May 28 on Instagram. “The cries for peace will rain down and when they do they will land on deaf ears because your violence has brought this resistance. We have the right to fight back. Rest in Power George Floyd.”
Kaepernick has been protesting police brutality at least since 2016 when, as a member of the San Francisco 49ers, he began kneeling at games during the national anthem. His protests caused division between those who saw the necessity of his protests and the people who accused him of race-baiting.
People thanked the former NFL quarterback for his post in the comments and said it couldn’t be more timely. But others accused him of encouraging violence and believe it’s the wrong message to send.
“That gave me chills! That’s exactly what should happen. Enough is enough💔💔,” one person wrote.
“This is crazy. What good will more violence do?” another person asked. “The only way we get change is through working within the law.”
Floyd was arrested after being accused of trying to use a fake $20 bill at a Cup Foods store. Four officers arrived, and 17-year-old Darnella Frazier filmed Chauvin with his knee on Floyd’s neck. All four officers were fired from the Minneapolis Police Department the following day.
Police spokesman John Elder said Floyd was intoxicated and resisted arrest, but that was contradicted after restaurant owner Rashad West released a surveillance tape that showed he wasn’t resisting.
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey said on Wednesday, May 27 that he doesn’t understand why Chauvin hasn’t been arrested yet, and he should be locked up. “If you had done it, or I had done it, we would be behind bars right now,” he stated.
Protests began in Minneapolis on Wednesday night, and there’s been looting and damage to buildings since then. People also marched to Chauvin’s house and were met by police in riot gear.
On Thursday, Minnesota Governor Tim Walz signed an executive order to bring in the Minnesota National Guard to help contain the riots. That same day, the National Guard mobilized in Minneapolis.
On Friday, the former NFLer announced that his charitable organization has started an initiative to “give legal representation to Freedom Fighters in Minneapolis.”