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Bruce Springsteen: ‘I admire [Colin] Kaepernick’

The Boss talked about Colin Kaepernick’s protest, and the Black Lives Matter movement.

Bruce Springsteen recently published a memoir, and in promoting it, he sat down for an interview with Rolling Stone. He spoke about a variety of topics, and given his recent comments calling Donald Trump a moron, he had a chance to expand on some of the topics relevant to the current election.

The discussion included questions about Black Lives Matter, and Colin Kaepernick’s protest. He did not go into a ton of detail, but he did acknowledge the difficulty athletes face when it comes to making political statements.

Athletics is a difficult place to make political statements. There was the Olympics in the Sixties, and obviously Muhammad Ali. But sports is such an escapist field. I think when politics or personal expression is injected, it rankles people more than in other fields. But we're in a time where there isn't any place where these issues can be excluded. I admire Kaepernick, but it's a very difficult field to be outspoken in.

We’ve seen this in full force with numerous athletes joining in Kaepernick’s protest. There are reports of kids on a middle school football team getting death threats and called the N word because they chose to take a knee. Seahawks wide receiver Doug Baldwin and Dolphins safety Michael Thomas said they have received death threats. And of course, Kaepernick mentioned receiving death threats, while acknowledging that he knew this was a possibility.

The election is five weeks away, but the issues Colin Kaepernick and others have brought up are not going away as soon as we get through November 8. Whether Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump becomes President, the issues of equality are a long way from being rectified.

Springsteen was asked about the Black Lives Matter movement, and the backlash it has received.

What do you think of Black Lives Matter?

Well, it's all chickens coming home to roost. These are issues that have been ignored or hidden, and due to modern technology and the availability of cellphone cameras and constant video feed, these things are coming to the surface. Black Lives Matter is a natural outgrowth and response to the injustices that have been occurring for a very long time in the United States.

Why is it so hard for so many white people to grapple with? Why the backlash?

Nobody likes being told they're wrong.

I agree that nobody likes being told they’re wrong, and at its most basic, that is sort of what is going on. But the more nuanced version of this involves 400 years of racism and the many issues that have developed because of that. So it is safe to say, this is going to take a long time to resolve.