On Thursday, Colin Kaepernick received another award to commemorate his courage and sacrifice. His courage and sacrifice, however, did not extend to the courageous act of potentially sacrificing any aspect of his collusion case against the NFL.
After Kaepernick received the W.E.B Du Bois Medal from Harvard’s Hutchins Center for African & American Research on Thursday afternoon, the live stream of the event was replaced with this message: “Due to the current litigation of W.E.B. Du Bois medalist Colin Kaepernick. No press photography or video livestream will be allowed of his remarks.”
That message appeared on the stream for roughly five minutes, ending as Kaepernick walked away from the podium.
There was a crowd in attendance, and tweets or other accounts of his comments may emerge. But nothing will be as reliable as the actual words themselves.
Kaepernick presumably was acting on the advice of his lawyers. The better advice may have been to embrace the moment, speak his mind, own his words, and not worry about the comments being used against him by the NFL in the looming arbitration hearing. Indeed, if he actually said something that would in some way undermine his claim, the NFL likely will find out about it anyway.
Maybe he should have written his words in advance, run them by his lawyers, and delivered them clearly and directly, without straying from the script. It would have filled months of silence (but for a Nike commercial) with a clear message that could have been crafted not to hurt but to help his cause.