NEW YORK— Free agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick has been named GQ’s magazine’s “Citizen of the Year” for his activism.
He’s been vilified by millions and locked out of the NFL — all because he took a knee to protest police brutality,” GQ wrote in a news release about the cover. “Colin Kaepernick’s determined stand puts him in rare company in sports history: Muhammad Ali, Jackie Robinson — athletes who risked everything to make a difference.”
Kaepernick began kneeling instead of standing during the national anthem last season to protest racial inequality and police brutality. The demonstration sparked a wave of NFL protests by players during the anthem that repeatedly have been denounced by President Donald Trump. Kaepernick parted ways with the San Francisco 49ers in March and hasn’t been signed by another team.
Kaepernick says on Twitter he’s “honored” by the recognition.
— Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) November 13, 2017
The magazine ‘s story includes comments from several of Kaepernick’s supporters and confidants. Rapper J. Cole says Kaepernick “sacrificed his dream” to stand for something. Ninety-year-old singer and activist Harry Belafonte says seeing people like Kaepernick taking action is “the greatest reward” he could ask for.