Athlete-turned-activist Colin Kaepernick is opening up about his upbringing in an new graphic novel called Change the Game.
While promoting this book, he’s also dishing on how Rick and Teresa Kaepernick—his adoptive parents, who are white—”perpetuated” anti-Blackness and put him through “very problematic things.”
Colin Kaepernick Says It’s ‘Important To Show’ The Experiences He Lived Through
Colin’s commentary came by way of a sit-down with CBS. During this interview, the former San Francisco 49ers QB acknowledged how his parents, who have been in his life since he was only five weeks old, love him dearly.
However, their biracial adoptive son nonetheless still went through “very problematic things” growing up. As a result, Colin noted that it’s “important to show” how some of these experiences—which included his parents’ pushback against him “embracing his Blackness”—played out.
“I know my parents loved me, but there were still very problematic things that I went through. I think it was important to show, ‘No, this can happen in your own home.’”
Kaerpernick went on to ponder, “How do we move forward collectively while addressing the racism that is being perpetuated?”
Colin Kaepernick has claimed that his adoptive parents, who are white, perpetuated racism by telling him as a teenager that cornrows were unprofessional. He has also stated that his upbringing in their home was riddled with “very problematic things.” pic.twitter.com/nXsbO8lJuz
— Frisch Report (@FrischReport) March 9, 2023
Colin Cites His Mother’s Objection To Cornrows: ‘You Look Like A Little Thug’
According to excerpts from Change the Game that were shared by the New York Post, some of the “very problematic things” that Colin experienced include his parents’ negative reaction to him rocking cornrows.
In response to this decision—which was influenced by Allen Iverson, who “wore his Blackness light a suit of armor”—the graphic novel cites Colin’s mother as responding, “He’s getting what rolls?”
When recalling the incident, Colin told CBS that he recalled comments like, “Oh, your hair’s not professional. Oh, you look like a little thug.”
In another example shared by the New York Post, Kaepernick highlighted a situation that involved his father openly speaking to a man who was donning a hat that featured the Confederate flag. In spite of Colin knowing that the Confederate flag “symbolized racism and slavery,” the book depicts his white adoptive father being unfazed by the matter.
What do you think about Colin Kaepernick speaking on the matter?