Colin Kaepernick knew he would receive Sports Illustrated’s Muhammad Ali Legacy Award on Tuesday night, but not from one of the most successful recording artists on the planet — Beyoncé.
“Colin took action with no fear of consequence or repercussion, only hope to change the world for the better,” Beyoncé said while presenting the award.
“To change the way we treat each other — especially people of color. We’re still waiting for the world to catch up. It’s been said that racism is so American that when we protest racism, some assume we’re protesting America.”
But Fox News contributor Kevin Jackson disagrees. In an interview on “Fox & Friends” last week, Jackson said, “They just turned Muhammad Ali’s Legacy Award into toilet paper.”
“Look, Kaepernick is no Ali,” he continued. “And the idea that the left continue to want to sell this lie to America, that this man stands for something that supposedly is happening in this country that’s not, just shows you that the left will never give up on this narrative.”
The legendary boxing champion and social justice activist Muhammad Ali was “a man who fought for what was right,” former President Barack Obama said of Ali following his death in 2016. “[He was] a man who fought for us.”
On Tuesday night when receiving the award, Kaepernick praised Ali.
“The footprints he leaves are large,” he said, “and his life is and has been a multi-textured tapestry that is rich in love, wisdom, life lessons and human kindness. I can only hope that I’m taking steps toward walking on the footsteps that he has left behind for the world to follow.”
He also said, “I accept this award not for myself, but on behalf of the people. Because if it were not for my love for the people, I would not have protested.”
#Repost @nessaonair – Tonight, @trevornoah brought out @beyonce to give Colin Kaepernick the Muhammad Ali Legacy Award. @Beyonce ‘With or without the NFL’s platform, I will continue to work for the people’@kaepernick7 receives SI’s… https://t.co/o3WsucqqXG pic.twitter.com/bWKtzhebOv
— KnowYourRightsCamp (@yourrightscamp) December 6, 2017
Kaepernick, a former San Francisco 49ers quarterback now an NFL free agent, remained seated before a preseason game in August 2016 during the traditional rendition of “The Star-Spangled Banner,” saying it was a protest against racial injustice and police brutality.
The following month, he took one knee instead of standing, which was a catalyst for NFL players to follow suit. During rallies and on Twitter, President Donald Trump has denounced the protests, calling for the predominantly Black NFL players to fired. In September, Trump told a political rally any protesting player was a “son of a bitch” who should be fired and urged a boycott of NFL games.
Since leaving the 49ers in March, Kaepernick has not been hired by another NFL team. In October he filed a grievance against the league, alleging collusion by owners following his protests.
In Trump’s America, there were people who took to Twitter Tuesday night to slam both Beyoncé and Kaepernick. They made reference to the video for her 2016 single “Formation” on the award-winning “Lemonade” album.
Beyoncé’s anti-police brutality message is reflected in scenes including “Stop Shooting Us” spray-painted in black against a white brick wall and a sinking New Orleans cop car at the video’s conclusion.
If I call all police officers racist despite the fact the numbers prove otherwise, will you get Beyonce to give me a Muhammad Ali Legacy Award ?
Thanks in advance
— HeroAssange (@HeroAssange) December 6, 2017
And, yes, Fox News weighed in, this time in a tweet by a pundit on the news channel, Tomi Lahren:
Police-hating Beyoncé presents police and America-hating Kappy with a “legacy” award. This is how far we’ve fallen. Wow. pic.twitter.com/KIe6IqEQey
— Tomi Lahren (@TomiLahren) December 6, 2017
The Sports Illustrated awards show will be broadcast on NBC Sports Network Friday night.