Search form

Scroll To Top

Megan Rapinoe: Colin Kaepernick Is 'Effectively Banned' From NFL

Megan Rapinoe Wins Woman of the Year Award, Thanks Colin Kaepernick

Rapinoe thanked the former 49ers quarterback while accepting the Glamour Woman of the Year Award.

The greatest soccer player in the world is speaking up about the National Football League's treatment of Colin Kaepernick. While accepting the Glamour Woman of the Year Award at a ceremony in New York this week, Megan Rapinoe thanked the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback for the work he's done highlighting issues of racial injustice.

"While I'm enjoying all of this unprecedented -- and frankly a little bit uncomfortable -- attention and personal success in large part due to my activism off the field, Colin Kaepernick is still effectively banned... from the NFL," she said.

Kaepernick sued the NFL for "collusion" after he claims the league conspired to lock him out when he began kneeling during halftime games in protest of police brutality. Although the second-round 2011 draft pick took the 49ers to the Super Bowl in 2013 -- narrowly losing to the Baltimore Ravens -- he opted out of his contract at the end of the 2016 season and was not picked up by another team. He remains a free agent.

Describing Kaepernick as "a person filled with conviction, unafraid of the consequences, because he knew it really wasn't about playing it safe," Rapinoe said he did "what was necessary" to protest "police brutality against people of color, known and systematic racial injustice, known and systematic white supremacy."

The lesbian soccer star claimed Kaepernick's bravery should be a call to other athletes to stand up for social justice. "It's imperative that we do more," she said.

Rapinoe won both the Golden Boot and Golden Ball at this year's World Cup, where she led the U.S. Women's National Team team to its fourth-ever title, and has been using award stages all year to bring awareness to issues affecting the LGBTQ+ community and other marginalized people. At the Best FIFA Football Awards in September, she brought attention to homophobia and racism in the world of soccer.

Both Rapinoe and Kaepernick have been extremely outspoken about social issues over the past few years, with Rapinoe joining in Kaepernick's protest of the national anthem by kneeling before games.

While President Donald Trump and other conservatives has falsely claimed that Kaepernick and athletes who have continued to kneel during the national anthem don't support the troops, the 32-year-old has said that he wanted to show his solidarity with the Black Lives Movement.

"To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way," he told NFL Media in 2016. "There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder."

The day after Rapinoe's speech, the NFL announced that it will be holding a tryout for Kaepernick this Saturday in Atlanta and inviting all interested teams. It's not known whether or not Rapinoe's advocacy influenced their decision, but with the power of her words, it wouldn't be surprising.

RELATED | Megan Rapinoe Just Made a Powerful Statement Against Donald Trump

Advocate Channel - The Pride StoreOut / Advocate Magazine - Fellow Travelers & Jamie Lee Curtis

From our Sponsors

Most Popular

Latest Stories

Mey Rude

Mey Rude is a journalist and cultural critic who has been covering queer news for a decade. The transgender, Latina lesbian lives in Los Angeles with her fiancée.

Mey Rude is a journalist and cultural critic who has been covering queer news for a decade. The transgender, Latina lesbian lives in Los Angeles with her fiancée.