Theres no doubt Megan Rapinoes sexuality played a part in her decision to kneel during the national anthem on Saturday night.
After her NWSL match against the Chicago Red Stars, the Seattle Reign midfielder saidit herself,
Being a gay American, I know what it means to look at the flag and not have it protect all of your liberties.
But Rapinoe, one of best and most popular players among the defending Womens World Cup champions, took her explanation to another level when she brought the unavoidable topic of race into the discussion.
On her decision to join 49ers quarterback, Colin Kaepernick, in protest, she said,
Its important to have white people stand in support of people of color on this. We dont need to be the leading voice, of course, but standing in support of them is something thats really powerful.
And those who agree with her might then wonder, why hasnt a white NFL player supported Kaepernick?
At the very least, its an interesting question. After all,if any athletewere to have enough empathy to stand up for the quarterback, you would think itd be one of his co-workers in a league that is over 65 percent black, and not a player from a different sport.
Megan Rapinoe vows to keep the conversation going by kneeling for the national anthem as a nod to Colin Kaepernick. pic.twitter.com/DcqkVS5d4V
ESPN (@espn) September 5, 2016
The fact that none of his white colleagues have done so falls in line with the rhetoric that has come from Kaepernicks opposition from the start.
If police brutality is truly a problem, some of his detractors have said, why doesnt he donate some of his millions to do something about it?
Others have asked about his silence when it comes to the real problem: Why doesnt he say anything about Chicago and murders in the inner city?
Like clockwork. “San Francisco Police Union To Colin Kaepernick: What About Black-On-Black Crime?” https://t.co/QwKaByFKPj
Gene Demby (@GeeDee215) August 31, 2016
Those questions add to another that often gets asked about black athletes: Why dont they speak up more?
Whatever way you slice it, itsall the same message: Why dont thoseguys fix their problem on theirown?