Ex-NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick was honored with Amnesty International’s Ambassador of Conscience Award for his public opposition to racial injustice and police brutality.
“The Ambassador of Conscience award celebrates the spirit of activism and exceptional courage, as embodied by Colin Kaepernick,” Salil Shetty, Secretary General of Amnesty International, said in a statement. “He is an athlete who is now widely recognized for his activism because of his refusal to ignore or accept racial discrimination.”
He confronted racial injustice.
He refused to compromise.
He inspired others.
— AmnestyInternational (@amnesty) April 21, 2018
The statement continued, “Just like the Ambassadors of Conscience before him, Colin Kaepernick chooses to speak out and inspire others despite the professional and personal risks. When high profile people choose to take a stand for human rights, it emboldens many others in their struggles against injustice.”
Kaepernick first took a knee during the national anthem to protest police brutality in America in 2016. The former NFL player has since become an activist, and has established his own charity known as the Colin Kaepernick Foundation. Through his organization Kaepernick “works to fight oppression around the world through education and social activism, including through free ‘Know Your Rights’ camps which educate and empower young people,” according to Amnesty International’s website.
The award is Amnesty International’s highest honor, its website said. The achievement is for “recognizing individuals who have promoted and enhanced the cause of human rights through their lives and by example.” He was presented the award by his former teammate, Eric Reid, who also joined in Kaepernick’s protests and has since remained unsigned by an NFL team.
By Charlie May