Days after Colin Kaepernick set the sports world ablaze by refusing to stand for the national anthem in protest, photos have surfaced showing the 49ers quarterback wearing socks depicting police officers as pigs.
Reports indicate that Kaepernick has worn the socks throughout training camp. CBS Sports claims that he’s been spotted sporting the socks as early as Aug. 10.
— Fox News (@FoxNews) September 1, 2016
On Sunday, Kaepernick cited police shootings as one of the reasons he decided to protest the national anthem.
"To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way,” he said. “There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder."
Kaepernick responded to the criticisms of his footwear with in an Instagram post on Thursday afternoon.
“I wore those socks, in the past, because the rogue cops that are allowed to hold positions in police departments, not only put the community in danger, but also put the cops that have the right intentions in danfer by creating an environment of tension and mistrust. I have two uncles and friends who are police officers and work to protect and serve ALL people. So before these socks, which were worn before I took my public stance,are used to distract from the real issues, I wanted to address this immediately.”
Kaepernick’s post hasn’t done much to stop an onslaught of criticism from the law enforcement community.
“It’s just ridiculous that the same league that prohibits the Dallas football club from honoring the slain officers in their community with their uniforms stands silent when Kaepernick is dishonoring police officers with what he’s wearing on the field," Bill Johnson, executive director of the National Association of Police Organizations said to USA Today. “I think the league is in a downward spiral regarding their obligations to the public under Roger Goodell, and this is just another example of that."
Johnson's comments come just three days after San Francisco's police union head called Kaepernick a "great disappointment."
Kaepernick is also facing more criticism on social media, adding to the tsunami of critical posts sent his way throughout the week.
Not all cops are pigs @Kaepernick7 . The same way not all NFL quarterbacks are good.
— Tom Crabtree (@itsCrab) September 1, 2016
Kaepernick has entered full blown clown status with this. Go away. https://t.co/WQ6mWWibX2
— Casey Stern (@CaseyStern) September 1, 2016
Alex Hider is a writer for the E.W. Scripps National Desk. Follow him on Twitter @alexhider.