Two-time Super Bowl champion and soon-to-be Hall of Famer Ray Lewis is no stranger to activism.
Lewis, a preacher, has always been outspoken about the challenges facing his community.
Being both activist and star athlete, Lewis had some insightful words for embattled quarterback Colin Kaepernick.
Lewis told Kaepernick he needs to prove he’s still serious about football if he wants to keep his career going.
Former NFL star linebacker Ray Lewis said Wednesday on Fox Sports 1’s “Speak for Yourself” that quarterback Colin Kaepernick needs to make up his mind and choose between the NFL and being an activist.
“I love his heart. I love what he’s standing for. These people, when you put on that uniform, that uniform is for one thing, E.D. It’s to go out and win football games. And they don’t care about [anything] else. So you’ve got to ask yourself, if you’re a [general manager], if you’re a head coach, do you want that in your locker room knowing that when you go out on gameday, the most important thing is to get your team together to say, ‘How do we win?’” Lewis stated.
“He has to make up his mind,” Lewis added. “Do you want to play football or be an activist?”
Lewis then said Kaepernick’s “fight” right now is not to battle injustices, but rather to respect the NFL and its brand.
Lewis has exhibited true leadership by being about more than feel-good words. He’s a man of action.
He mostly recently proved this when he and Jim Brown met with then-President-Elect Trump amidst a maelstrom of criticism.
From the Daily Caller:
The former Baltimore Ravens star linebacker has been criticized by the black community for agreeing to meet with [President Trump]. Lewis and fellow NFL great Jim Brown have used their platforms to create change in urban communities and Lewis confirmed that’s why they were there at Trump Tower…
“The reason why we went there, if people really want to know why we went there, we went there for our future. To give our future a real chance,” Lewis told Fox Sports Colin Cowherd on “The Herd.”
“And you know you hear all these reports ‘Well, oh, they’ve turned their backs on the black communities,’ it’s the most embarrassing thing when you hear stuff like that,” Lewis continued.
“And so you when you hear people talk about ‘I would never go in the White House and I would never meet Trump,’ well guess what? Maybe you don’t feel the same way about your kids the way I feel about my kids. Cause I want my kids to be damn safer,” Lewis said.
“That was a serious meeting about kids and our future,” not simply talking about it, but acting to change it. “See that’s one thing about it, a lot of people talk, right?” Lewis said. “Charity never compares to change.”
“I can give any damn thing I want to give,” Lewis continued. “I can write a check for anything. Change, change is being willing to do what people won’t do. So when people say, ‘Oh, I wouldn’t go sit with him,’ well don’t,” Lewis said of his meeting with Trump. “But guess what, I got four black kids. Sons, who I want to be safer. So you know what, if I’m going to stand for anybody, I’m damn sure going to stand for them.”
Lewis said he and Brown didn’t go there to ask for anything, but to explain the problems in urban neighborhood. “But we need a machine behind us to change what’s going on in urban neighborhoods,” Lewis said.
The former NFL star also clarified who was at the meeting and how it went down. Lewis and Brown were joined by several others including Bill Gates, Curtis Martin and Trump’s sons, as well as members of his cabinet who he referred to as “smart decision-makers.”
Trump and his cabinet agreed that the problems Lewis and Brown want to tackle in urban communities are important. Lewis said Trump and newly appointed secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson would work to accomplish their vision and “give these kids hope.”
Colin Kaepernick is lost at sea. His heart doesn’t seem to be in football anymore, and his political stances are rooted in a grab-bag of radical leftist propaganda; Kaepernick has advocated for upending the “system,” but he hasn’t described what he would replace it with.
Karl Marx never figured that out, either.
Additionally, Kaepernick hasn’t yet figured out how to balance his football and his activism (or what his message is), but Lewis did. Kaepernick should listen before he finds himself permanently out of football.