Beyoncé can do anything with the type of grace and power most mortals lack, but Tuesday night (December 4), her words contained a special type of electricity. At the 2017 Sports Illustrated Sportsperson of the Year Ceremony, Queen Bey gave a beautiful speech to Colin Kaepernick as she presented him with the Muhammad Ali Legacy Award.
In August 2016, Kaepernick started a revolution. By sitting then eventually kneeling during the national anthem, Kaepernick began a dialogue about the unjust killings of blacks by law enforcement. The conversation the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback started is still unfolding, not only in the NFL, but around the country. All this and more was inspiration for Beyoncé's speech.
Thank you, Colin Kaepernick. Thank you for your selfless heart and your conviction. Thank you for your personal sacrifice. Colin took action with no fear of consequence or repercussion — only hope to change the world for the better, to change perception, to change the way we treat each other, especially people of color. We're still waiting for the world to catch up. It's been said that racism is so American that when we protest racism, some assume we're protesting America. So let's be very clear. Colin has always been very respectful.
Kaepernick had a special and powerful message of his own as he cradled the award.
"I accept this award not for myself but on behalf of the people," said Kaepernick. "Because if it were not for my love for the people, I would not have protested. And if it was not for the support from the people, I would not be on this stage today. With or without the NFL’s platform, I will continue to work for the people, because my platform is the people."
2017 will keep on 2017-ing, but it is moments like this that make it seem like we'll pull through the nightmare.