NFL player Eric Reid says he will not stop kneeling during the national anthem, despite league rules to the contrary, until changes in the world are made that he views as necessary. Reid was among the first players to support Colin Kaepernick when he started kneeling during the national anthem to draw attention to perceived racial injustices in the U.S.
Carolina Panthers defensive back Eric Reid criticized the NFL over its partnership with rapper and business mogul Jay Z and his agency Roc Nation to “strengthen community through music and the NFL’s Inspire Change initiative.”
Reid, who was the first teammate of Colin Kaepernick to kneel during the national anthem in the 2016 season, criticized the league and confirmed that the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback was not part of the deal.
“You & some others seem to misunderstand that we had no beef with the NFL until they started perpetuating the systemic oppression that we are fighting by blackballing Colin and then me,” Reid tweeted.
“Nah I won’t quit playing but I will be a royal pain in the NFL’s a** for acting like they care about people of color by forming numerous disingenuous partnerships to address social injustice while collectively blackballing Colin, the person who brought oppression and social injustice to the forefront of the NFL platform.”
Reid also questioned the timing of the announcement because of the recent controversy over Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross hosting a fundraiser for President Trump.
“Interesting timing on the partnership with Jay-Z on the heels of Stephen Ross’ fundraiser for Donald Trump and the backlash his other companies are getting because of it.”
Reid and Kaepernick filed a grievance against the NFL stating that owners were “blackballing” them because they decided to kneel during the national anthem. Reid signed with the Panthers in the middle of last season and the grievance was settled in February.
Reid has vowed to continue to kneel during the anthem, while Kaepernick remains unsigned.