Safety Eric Reid took a knee during the national anthem in his first game with the Carolina Panthers. Reid was a San Francisco 49ers teammate of Colin Kaepernick — Reid was the first player to join the controversial quarterback in kneeling during the anthem. Kaepernick, of course, had many followers and the kneeling trend became a national issue, a political firestorm, and the possible cause of collusion by NFL owners against the protesting players. (Kaepernick has filed a collusion suit, and Reid has joined the suit — Reid spent half a year without an NFL job before being picked up by Carolina.)
Reid has been a bouyant supporter of the protest and of Kaepernick, pushing the #IMWITHKAP hashtag. In this he aligns with Nike, which courted commercial controversy by boldly signing Kaepernick to an advertising deal, deciding that Kaerpernick’s brand of individual courage, social justice-seeking and resolve represented the Nike brand (and its “Just Do It” ethos) in a singular way. The kneeling is meant to raise awareness of systemic unequal treatment of minorities in society, especially by authorities like police. Other big names, basketball superstar LeBron James among them (see below), are also on the #IMWITHKAP team.
— NESSA (@nessnitty) October 5, 2018
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