San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick may have just made his biggest splash in the NFL this weekend, but having patriotic football fans burn your jersey isn't the best symbol of popularity.
According to NFL.com, Kaepernick refused to stand when the national anthem played.
He explained his actions as a protest, saying, "I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color. To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder."
His team's officials stood by his decision, writing in a statement that "The national anthem is and always will be a special part of the pre-game ceremony. It is an opportunity to honor our country and reflect on the great liberties we are afforded as its citizens. In respecting such American principles as freedom of religion and freedom of expression, we recognize the right of an individual to choose and participate, or not, in our celebration of the national anthem."
Very vocal Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke had a little different take on the whole matter, though. On Twitter, he excoriated Kaepernick and the 49ers' leadership, writing, "He has no 'right' to do this while employed by 49ers. Make him stand or cut him for conduct detrimental to the team."
Earlier, Clarke wrote: "He reinforces phrase, 'dumb jock.' He has no 'right' to do this while working for a private business. The oppression he talks about might be the Democrat Party exploitation of black people by herding them into ghettos. This idiot makes millions talking about 'oppression' while working for a capitalist profit entity called the NFL."
Do you agree with Sheriff Clarke?