Retweets don’t always equal endorsements. But judging by Colin Kaepernick’s recent Twitter activity, he sure appears to have a lot of thoughts on the NFL’s new policy regarding protests during the National Anthem.
The former San Francisco 49ers quarterback, who sparked controversy in 2016 for sitting and then kneeling during the National Anthem in protest of racial injustice, has yet to comment directly on the new policy, which requires all players on the field to stand.
To be fair, he’s probably limited to what he can say due to his ongoing legal battle with the league. He and former teammate Eric Reid are alleging that NFL owners have colluded to keep them from being signed.
Still, Kaepernick has been throwing major shade at the NFL through his retweets.
On May 23, the day the new policy was announced, he retweeted scholar Ameer Hasan Loggins in what seems like a subtle jab at the NFL and other players in the league.
Loggins, who goes by @LeftSentThis on Twitter, wrote, “Being inside of a system doesn’t necessarily change it, more often than not, you become absorbed in it until the system that you sought to reform, reforms you.”
With that retweet, Kaepernick seems to be saying he’s affected more change working outside the NFL than within it.
Since being sidelined from the NFL, Kaepernick has become a full-fledged activist. Most recently, he received Amnesty International’s Ambassador of Conscience Award, the organization’s highest honor. Earlier this year, he completed his pledge to donate $1 million to organizations working in what he called oppressed communities.
The same day as the Loggins retweet, Kaepernick also retweeted his attorney and CNN legal analyst Mark Geragos, who shared an ESPN article about the NFL’s new policy. The tweet was marked with a not-so-subtle hashtag: #nflcollusion.
But wait, there’s more.
The following day, Kaepernick retweeted a NowThis video that explains why he risked his NFL career to protest systemic racism.
Again, he also retweeted his attorney, who shared a section of United States Code that deals with conflicts of interest concerning the federal government. The code specifies that any member of the legislative or executive branch who attempts to influence the employment decisions of a private entity on the basis of partisan political affiliation can be fined, imprisoned and/or disqualified from holding office.
Geragos’ comment? “Winning!”
It just so happens that the day before, Vice President Mike Pence had tweeted a screenshot of CNN’s homepage announcing news of the NFL’s new policy. Pence had included the hashtag #Winning.
Kaepernick’s retweet came on the same day Fox News aired an interview in which President Donald Trump praised NFL owners for doing the “right thing.”
“You have to stand proudly for the National Anthem or you shouldn’t be playing. You shouldn’t be there. Maybe you shouldn’t be in the country,” Trump said in the interview.
Kaepernick also retweeted a highlight reel set to a song by rapper Wale, titled “Salary Kaep.” The track is an homage to Kaepernick’s protest efforts and in it, Wale calls out Trump and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.
So even though Kaepernick isn’t saying much about the NFL’s new policy, we know exactly where he stands (or kneels).