J. Cole shows more support for Colin Kaepernick.
Colin Kaepernick, for better or, in the eyes of some at least, for worse, has been by far and away the most talked about NFL player over the course of this season and he still hasn't set foot on the field. Instead, he continues to relish his role as an unlikely lightning rod for promoting racial equality and potentially inciting social change. Those factors are what led to him covering GQ magazine for their most recent issue, with an article headline that stated he would not be silenced. In the long-form interview, it wasn't just Kap talking about the power of his message - others were also doing it on his behalf.
Enter J. Cole, a rapper who has also been a vocal supporter of Kaepernick's since the very beginning of his kneeling protests during the National Anthem. Said Cole: "I met him during his breakout season. I actually went to the first game he really played in, against the Jets. I just happened to be at that game." However, their bond was taken to another level once the emcee found out about what Kapernick was doing on the sideline. "It hit another level for me the second I learned he was taking a knee," he continued, adding that Kaepernick's responses to the controversy in other interviews have been "clear and potent," showing the world that he has "the biggest balls" in all of professional sports.
For J. Cole, the added element of sacrificing his football livelihood is something else that he believes not many people are taking into consideration. "Look what happens to him," he said. "Had he not done that, this guy would be making millions of dollars right now. [...] more important than the money, he was living his dream. He sacrificed his dream." Filmmaker Ava DuVernay, who is best known for her civil rights box-office hit Selma, compared Kaepernick to an artist, in terms of the significance of his message. "Civil rights activists are artists," she proclaimed. "Athletes are artists [...] I think some folks see his protests, his resistance, as not his work. Not intentional. Not strategic. Not as progressive action. As if this was just a moment that he got caught up in. This was work. This is work that he's doing."