Jones: Kaepernick, Lochte cases are as different as black and white
Written by Solomon Jones on August 31, 2016
SAN FRANCISCO 49ers Quarterback Colin Kaepernick sits down during the national anthem to protest America’s treatment of people of color, and he is accused of being a traitor to his country.
Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte is facing criminal charges in Brazil for falsely reporting he was robbed at gunpoint, and, while he lost several endorsements as a result, he ultimately was rewarded with a stint on ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars.”
Both men are accomplished athletes. Kaepernick appeared in Super Bowl XLVII. Lochte is a 12-time Olympic medalist.
But Lochte is white, Kaepernick is black, and when black men stand up against American oppression, the fears of the white establishment arise. Fears that a single man seated on a bench is the forerunner to violent rebellion; that an athlete with the gall to think for himself is a danger to the order of things.