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Black Activists and Ravens Fans Call on Baltimore Ravens to Sign Colin Kaepernick

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Color Of Change

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

August 4, 2017

CONTACT: Mark Ro Beyersdorf, mark@berlinrosen.com 

 

Black Activists and Ravens Fans Call on Baltimore Ravens to Sign Colin Kaepernick

 

Ravens headquarters is overwhelmed by hundreds of phone calls asking the team to sign Kaepernick

 

NEW YORK—Staff at Baltimore Ravens Headquarters are now hanging up or refusing to take comments in support of Colin Kaepernick as Ravens fans, Black activists, and Kaepernick supporters inundate the team with hundreds of phone calls asking the Ravens to sign Kaepernick. The Ravens’ egregious silencing of this outpouring of support for Kaepernick comes after the team’s executives publicly stated that they wanted to hear from fans as they made their decision. The effort to support Kaepernick is being driven by Color Of Change, the nation’s largest online civil rights organization, which has launched a website to mobilize calls in support of Kaepernick to Ravens Headquarters and is running digital ads on the front page of The Baltimore Sun’s website calling on the Ravens to sign Kaepernick.

 

Kaepernick, who has been a free agent since March, has yet to be signed by an NFL team following his high-profile refusal to stand during the national anthem in the 2016 season in protest of police brutality and violence against Black people. He ended the 2016 NFL season with 2,241 passing yards, sixteen passing touchdowns, four interceptions, added 468 rushing yards as well as two rushing touchdowns. He is the only player with a top 50 selling jersey who has not been signed and he is the best quarterback currently on the market as the Ravens face the upcoming football season with an injured first-string quarterback and a failing second-string quarterback.

 

“The refusal of NFL owners to sign Kaepernick is not about football—it’s about fear of Black peoples’ free speech,” said Rashad Robinson, Executive Director of Color Of Change. “It is deeply disturbing that team owners in the NFL—which has no Black owners even as nearly seventy percent of league’s players are Black—won’t sign a star who engages in peaceful protest to support his community. Colin Kaepernick speaks for so many of us, and silencing him sends a message to every football viewer that the concerns of Black communities are not valid. Signing Kaepernick should be a no brainer for the Ravens. As the home team of city that has been rife with racial tension for years, the Ravens should welcome the opportunity to send a message that they, too, want to see our country get to a better place. Our country was founded on protest and has been made better by oppressed communities continuing to protest and fight to open institutions that shut us out, including professional sports leagues. At time when pro football teams seem to have no problem signing domestic abusers, it is the NFL’s actions that require scrutiny—not Kaepernick’s heartfelt commitment to justice for Black communities.”

 

Last year, Color of Change launched a petition in support of Colin Kaepernick that has received over 90,000 signatures. Since then, Color Of Change has continued to support Kaepernick and challenged other attempts to limit the free speech of Black communities.

 

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Color Of Change is the nation’s largest online racial justice organization. We help people respond effectively to injustice in the world around us. As a national online force driven by over one million members, we move decision-makers in corporations and government to create a more human and less hostile world for Black people in America. Visit www.colorofchange.org.

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Kaepernick's name has come up numerous times on our forums regarding the relative merits of his activist and quarterbacking talent.

 

I checked out the website where the petition can be signed, and it seems the Raven starting QB is injured. Colin, apparently, is already engaged in discussions for the role.  It is not really clear to me what else needs to be done.  If the Ravens can work a deal and feel Kaepernick can help the team he'll likely be hired.  A petition seems unnecessary.

 

But even if we believed the Ravens were racist; afraid of  “...Black peoples’ free speech” and did not want to help their team win, and pressure from the petition actually helped get Colin on the team.  Then what?  Will the NFL be less racist?  WIll the players be more than million dollar slaves?  What will this mean to Black people collectively?

 

I would like to see Color of change call, or anyone, call for a complete boycott of professional football.  Don't watch it on TV, don't buy the products, don't go to the games, and players don't play.  Maybe the profession will change in a more meaningful ways that actually benefit not just Black folks but everyone.  This of course,  is just my fantasy and will never happen, so we'll continue to be at the mercy of the NFL owners who are largely free to do whatever they want.

 

No puny petition will change this....

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White Raven fans have pushed back and are bombarding management with a demand to not hire Kaepernick, and the owners are reportedly on the verge of  caving to this pressure..  Black NFL players earn too much money to jeopardize their careers by publicly supporting Kaepernick .  Suggestions that black people boycott the NFL by not watching their televised games will make little impact.  So Kaepernick's cause is a lost one. One black player, whose name i've forgotten, did have the  guts to say that  the NFL stands for: "NiggasForLease".

 

Demonstrations have never been guaranteed to bring extensive and permanent change.  Even MLK's civil rights ones didn't do this because racism has made a comeback.  What demonstrations do, however, is to expose racism for all eyes to see.  They provide proof that the organizations demonstrated against cater to the will of racists and that they have no integrity but are just further  proof of Pioneer's beloved  country not living up to its  morals and principles - as usual.    

 

Maybe Colin Kaepernick should quit football, go into politics and run for office. That's one way he could possibly gain wide spread black support the would lead to more viable results.    

 

 

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Well it is not like we need proof of the obvious racism in the NFL as Harry describes in another post.  

 

Again while I know it is impossible to execute, my fantasy would be to see the NFL boycotted, watch it crumble and to see black folks start their own league and bring in the white boys --who have the talent to play.  We would truly profiting from the entertainment we provide because we own the league rather than simply being Niggers for Lease, Million Dollar Slaves, or whatever you wanna call them.

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"....my fantasy would be to see the NFL boycotted, watch it crumble and to see black folks start their own league and bring in the white boys --who have the talent to play."  

 

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What's going on in the NFL is just a macrocosmic example of what's going on at thousands of jobs sites all over the nation on a daily basis.
Black people having to swallow their pride and keep their beliefs and opinions to themselves just to hold a job and get along with their White co-workers.

The U.S. Constitution grants you freedom of speech but if you're working for a private company you basically have to follow their rules and keep your mouth shut and keep your personal opinions to yourself or risk getting fired.

I believe Troy and other Black professionals I know both online and in real life have told me the main reason they left corporate America was because of the rampant racism and the subtle hostile environment you feel working around many White males.

So the NFL is not much different where you have talented Black men who's talents aren't even considered if they don't tow the line and obey their White managers or handlers.

Even if they don't fire you over your comments, most states in the United States today are "right to work" states that give private employers the right to fire their workers at any time for any reason or for no reason at all.

You see a similar situation going on with Google and hundreds of women now complaining about the sexist and mysogynistic culture that's prevelant in places like Google and other corporate environments dominated by White males.

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