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President Obama’s full statement on Colin Kaepernick

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - NOVEMBER 10:  Guests chat with Colin Kaepernick during a Hublot SF Celebration With Colin Kaepernick At Kokkari on November 10, 2015 in San Francisco, California.  (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images for Haute Living) Getty Images

During a press conference on his visit to China, President Obama was asked about 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s decision not to stand for the national anthem. This was his full answer:

“In terms of Mr. Kaepernick, I’ve got to confess that I haven’t been thinking about football while I’ve been over here and I haven’t been following this closely, but my understanding, at least, is that he’s exercising his Constitutional right to make a statement. I think there’s a long history of sports figures doing so. I think there are a lot of ways you can do it. As a general matter, when it comes to the flag, and the national anthem, and the meaning it holds for our men and women in uniform and those who fought for us, that is a tough thing for them to get past, to then hear what his deeper concerns are. But I don’t doubt his sincerity, based on what I’ve heard. I think he cares about some real, legitimate issues that have to be talked about. And if nothing else, what he’s done is he’s generated more conversation around some topics that need to be talked about.”

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24 Responses to “President Obama’s full statement on Colin Kaepernick”
  1. justintuckrule says: Sep 5, 2016 10:52 AM

    Precisely mr. President. Too bad 48% of our population are close minded from a generation gone by

  2. mongo3401 says: Sep 5, 2016 11:04 AM

    What would start change is if the leaders of the larger black gangs take a knee in respect of the flag and ask all the members of their gangs to out down the drugs and the guns. If that comes of this ? I will shake Kaepernicks hand and show my Thanks and deep respect. It has to start inside the community Until that happens we are just peeing on each other’s shoes.

  3. wolfgangvomframps says: Sep 5, 2016 11:48 AM

    Mongo, fix your own community and then worry about others. Get rural and suburban white people off meth and off welfare. Then tell others how to live.

  4. The Almighty Cabbage says: Sep 5, 2016 12:28 PM

    justintuckrule says:
    Sep 5, 2016 10:52 AM

    Precisely mr. President. Too bad 48% of our population are close minded from a generation gone by
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    I’m part of that generation and I’m not close minded. It’s not easy. I don’t mean it’s not easy to remain open minded; I mean it’s not easy that most of my peers are bigoted idiots.

    Going further, we did this. We wrecked the entire country. I hear a lot of complaining about “millennials.” I’m not even sure what that is, but I’m guessing it’s people born in this millennium or close to it. So…

    No, they don’t work the way we work and they don’t think the way we think. Those are good things. Our way ruined an entire country! Wtf! You want them to do the same things we did?

    It’s up to today’s kids to fix it. I don’t know if they’ll be able to or not but I’m encouraged by their bravery. When they see a wrong, they’ll step right up and call it a wrong. Most people my age won’t… and that’s a pretty big part of the problem.

  5. strummer174 says: Sep 5, 2016 1:35 PM

    A fair response. The president can’t encourage anyone to disrespect the anthem, but he also can’t discourage someone from exercising a constitutional right.

    I have a lot of issues with Obama’s policies, but he has done a good job of being fair-minded and keeping himself out of issues that are not his. It’s easy to dismiss him because I don’t agree with him politically, but after enduring the sideshow that he 2016 campaign has become, I must admit I will miss Obama’s integrity when he is gone. Neither of the two major candidates has an inkling of his fundamental decency. That saddens me.

  6. howdydoodyisalive says: Sep 5, 2016 5:21 PM

    It’s beyond sad that our president doesn’t understand constitutional freedoms.

    Kaepernick does NOT have a constitutional right to say whatever he wants whenever he wants. He does had the right, like all of us, to not have the government pass a law stopping him from doing so.

    The NFL is a privately run enterprise, and as such they have the “right” to stop this nonsense if they wanted to, but of course they won’t.

    Go and try this out with your boss tomorrow and call him every name you can think of and find out if you have the constitutional right to say what you want. You don’t, and you will most likely be fired unless you are under a contract that requires a hearing first.

    The CBA may allow for silent protests, but if they can dictate what you can do with your uniform they can certainly put at end to this, if the union goes along with it, which they probably won’t. This is going to get out of hand imo.

  7. mostepicgnar says: Sep 5, 2016 7:22 PM

    Modern day oppression comes with Dre beat headphones, Jordan sneakers and a smart phone.

  8. 1greatusername says: Sep 5, 2016 7:51 PM

    Who cares what the lame duck thinks? And the lameness is not new. Who cares about his NCAA bracket choices, his golf game, or his socialist perspective on society in general? Keep the personal stuff to yourself and do your job.

    I would like to know what happened in Benghazi, why the Solindra money disappeared, and why the AFA failed so miserably to keep its promises. THAT is what I want to hear from POTUS. *** crickets ***

    I actually don’t want to hear anything from Kaep either, unless the unvarnished truth might actually get published without spin. I might have sympathy for him as a pawn in a rich man’s game, but he could also just be an idiot.

  9. allamer1 says: Sep 5, 2016 9:44 PM

    {In terms of Mr. Kaepernick, I’ve got to confess that I haven’t been thinking about football while I’ve been over here and I haven’t been following this closely, but my understanding, at least, is that he’s exercising his Constitutional right to make a statement.}

    So says Obama. He doesn’t really understand what Kaepernick is protesting….but he’s OK with it. Weasel words from a politician.

  10. stepszy says: Sep 6, 2016 2:28 AM

    howdydoodyisalive says:
    Sep 5, 2016 5:21 PM
    It’s beyond sad that our president doesn’t understand constitutional freedoms.

    Yes, the man that taught constitutional law doesn’t understand constitutional freedoms…

  11. skawh says: Sep 6, 2016 4:22 AM

    1greatusername says:
    Sep 5, 2016 7:51 PM
    Who cares what the lame duck thinks? And the lameness is not new. Who cares about his NCAA bracket choices, his golf game, or his socialist perspective on society in general? Keep the personal stuff to yourself and do your job.

    I would like to know what happened in Benghazi, why the Solindra money disappeared, and why the AFA failed so miserably to keep its promises. THAT is what I want to hear from POTUS. *** crickets ***

    I actually don’t want to hear anything from Kaep either, unless the unvarnished truth might actually get published without spin. I might have sympathy for him as a pawn in a rich man’s game, but he could also just be an idiot.
    ——-
    Struck another political nerve in you, did he?

    Well, I’ll call your “waiting for POTUS” on some lame comparatively unimportant issue, and raise you a wait for the Bush Administration’s explanation for creating a war based upon a lie, that killed and injured countless thousands; or the 2008 financial meltdown that nearly bankrupted the entire world – Take your pick.

    Kaep is maturing, being true to himself, and following his conscience. That’s an unselfish and admirable trait, especially considering so many others in his financial position remain silent, if only to protect their bottom line.

  12. orange and blue idoits says: Sep 6, 2016 6:51 AM

    This is the guy who, without taking an moment to consider the effects if words, blurted out that “the Cambridge police acted stupidly”. What did you expect he would say about Colon?

    He had the opportunity to react as a human being, and American and a POTUS. We know which way he went.

    Race 1st. That’s how he thinks.

  13. 1historian says: Sep 6, 2016 11:57 AM

    One question, Mr. President:

    Who is Rodney Earl Sanders?

  14. i thumbs down your comment says: Sep 6, 2016 12:29 PM

    The guy who makes the fried chicken?

  15. orange and blue idoits says: Sep 6, 2016 1:08 PM

    Well, I’ll call your “waiting for POTUS” on some lame comparatively unimportant issue, and raise you a wait for the Bush Administration’s explanation for creating a war based upon a lie, that killed and injured countless thousands; or the 2008 financial meltdown that nearly bankrupted the entire world – Take your pick.

    @ skawh

    see you’ve joined the “but Bush was worse” Obama apology tour.

    Maybe you should research the fact that (D) Barney Frank and (D) Maxine Waters “defended to the death” Franklin Raines when FM was going down the tubes. They were being told straight up this was going to happen and they, like their boss BHO, went party, then race and stopped short of actually doing anything to prevent this avoidable disaster. I believe the term they used was “outstanding leadership of Franklin Raines”.

    But I will defend to the death your right to make prejudiced statements.

  16. orange and blue idoits says: Sep 6, 2016 3:12 PM

    stepszy says:
    Sep 6, 2016 2:28 AM
    howdydoodyisalive says:
    Sep 5, 2016 5:21 PM
    It’s beyond sad that our president doesn’t understand constitutional freedoms.

    Yes, the man that taught constitutional law doesn’t understand constitutional freedoms…

    We know he believes that the government is responsible for the success of small business owners.

  17. howdydoodyisalive says: Sep 6, 2016 6:11 PM

    stepszy says:
    Sep 6, 2016 2:28 AM
    Yes, the man that taught constitutional law doesn’t understand constitutional freedoms…

    ___________________________________

    I pity his students then, although that does explain a LOT.

    1st amendment rights ONLY prohibit the GOVERNMENT from passing laws that restrict your free speech. Anyone who claims that it gives you the right to say whatever and whenever you want is either ignorant of the constitution or being disingenuous for other reasons. You pick which one describes Obama.

  18. stuckonwords says: Sep 6, 2016 7:13 PM

    justintuckrule says:
    Sep 5, 2016 10:52 AM
    Precisely mr. President. Too bad 48% of our population are close minded from a generation gone by
     
    121 up 243 down

    If that was true, you’d expect to see the votes on your comment be

    189 up 175 down

    Instead, 67% of voters disagree with you. And if we’re being honest, the folks here lean liberal.

  19. wolfgangvomframps says: Sep 6, 2016 7:16 PM

    Orange and Blue,

    I run a small business. Since 2010, my revenues have gone up about 20% every year. Sure part of it is my own hard work, but solid economic policies by this administration have certainly helped.

    I could stamp my feet and say “IT IS ALL ME. GOVERNMENT DID NOTHING!” but you see, I’m not a jerk and as such, I understand that others played a role. That may be part of the reason I’ve been successful these past six years while so many tea partiers have failed.

  20. kingkreg12 says: Sep 6, 2016 11:47 PM

    You have a serious misunderstanding about our rights in this country

  21. orange and blue idoits says: Sep 7, 2016 6:57 AM

    wolfgangvomframps says:
    Sep 6, 2016 7:16 PM

    Orange and Blue,

    I run a small business. Since 2010, my revenues have gone up about 20% every year. Sure part of it is my own hard work, but solid economic policies by this administration have certainly helped.

    I could stamp my feet and say “IT IS ALL ME. GOVERNMENT DID NOTHING!” but you see, I’m not a jerk and as such, I understand that others played a role. That may be part of the reason I’ve been successful these past six years while so many tea partiers have failed

    I was ready to believe you until you tipped your hand with the tea party bit. That’s so 4 years ago dude.
    Of course you need infrastructure but to give the government props like that is just silly. “tea partiers” as you put it also did well. not all failed and regardless you can’t connect those dot. Bottom line is that “tea partiers” as well as “nanny starters” both failed and succeed under both parties. your story is defensive and more probably than not apocryphal.

  22. wolfgangvomframps says: Sep 7, 2016 11:14 AM

    Orange and Blue,

    I referenced tea partiers because tea party states have significantly more people on food stamps than do traditionally blue states. It is either lack of work ethic or terrible state-wide policies.

    Whether lazy or the stupid, states like Georgia and Alabama and Mississippi have failed, while states like California, Illinois, New York and Mass. all have booming construction markets.

    Heck, even Chicago, despite governmental issues related to pensions and mounting homicides since Conceal Carry was passed and gun restrictions loosened, lead the country in corporate re-locations.

    Businesses like mine see the value of blue states and want to move there, and they also tend to bring well paying jobs, and as such, you see a lower percentage of people on food stamps.

    Much of my work relates to construction. The stimulus caused a major reversal in the market. We went from losing jobs to creating jobs. More money was put in the economy and as a result, more people spent more money on homes. The Fed keeping interest rates low helped too.

    I worked hard, but if President Bush was still in office (or somebody continuing his policies) I doubt my business would have seen the growth we’ve experienced. I any case, nice talking to you. Business is good. I need to get back to making money.

    So yeah, I do give the President credit. I didn’t do it alone.

  23. 1greatusername says: Sep 7, 2016 4:19 PM

    @skawh

    Struck another political nerve in you, did he?

    Apparently I struck one of yours as well.

    Sure, the same goes for Bush, Clinton, etc. None of them are or were transparent. I wish they were. And they’re all 100% obligated to do the jobs they’ve been elected to do to the best of their abilities, period.

    Sheesh, a little sensitive about BO, aren’t you? LOL

  24. metalman5150 says: Sep 8, 2016 9:48 AM

    I’d rather have eight more years of Obama, than to have four new years with Hillary and/or Trumpinator.

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