Cam Newton doesn’t want protest to come between himself and Colin Kaepernick.
Newton said so Wednesday in an Instagram message directed toward Kaepernick amid the San Francisco 49ers quarterback’s ongoing protest against violence and oppression of minority communities in the United States.
Newton praised Kaepernick for raising social issues and asked the public to focus on doing the right thing, show love and hold each other accountable for our actions.
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Deadspin translated Newton’s message to Kaepernick into plain text for our convenience:
“Salute my brother for making a stand for injustice in this country but…. the real problem is and will always be the people and how we treat one another! I see a lot of memes and even articles about Cam vs. Kap, are they OK? But the truth is we are good and will always be good… we all are different have the right to feel anyway we want to… and I salute him for standing (in this case kneeling) for something to if not fix the issues, raise awareness of the issues. I’m an African American that’s black and proud to the day I die and I try to make an impact in my community as much as I can. How are you making a difference? But it all goes for nothing if we all don’t police ourselves and love one another no matter what the race is! We all have to do better and be held accountable for our actions (police included)… I’m not here to talk about race, I’m here to talk about what’s right!!! And we all have to do what’s right no matter the race, age, or gender!”
But Newton said Wednesday at a press conference that he won’t join Kaepernick in kneeling during the playing of the “Star Spangled Banner” prior to games.
Newton also weighed in on the developing hostility in Charlotte where police shot and killed a black man earlier this week. Protests followed on Tuesday and Wednesday, and one person was killed Wednesday night during the protests.
“I’m an African-American. I am not happy how the justice has been kind of dealt with over the years,” Newton said at his news conference, per Sports Illustrated. “The state of oppression in our community. But we also, as black people, have to do right by ourselves. We can’t be hypocrites.
“I say that on one voice but also on another voice that when you go public or when things happen in the community, it’s not the fact that things are happening. It’s the way they’re being treated after they’re happening. When you get a person that does some unjust things or killing an innocent person, killing fathers, killing people who have actual families. That’s real.”
Thumbnail photo via Bob Donnan/USA TODAY Sports Images