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Why This Sports Illustrated Cover Without Colin Kaepernick Is Trash



The latest cover of Sports Illustrated is being ripped by Steph Curry and others for a glaring omission. The words, “A Nation Divided Sports United” is plastered on the front along with a Photoshopped image of LeBron James, Steph Curry, Roger Goddell, Steve Kerr, Aaron Rodgers, Shad Khan and several other sports figures locking arms or looking stoic.

INGLEWOOD, CA – AUGUST 27: Keyshia Ka’Oir (L) and Gucci Mane attend the 2017 MTV Video Music Awards at The Forum on August 27, 2017 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Rich Fury/Getty Images)

Noticeably absent from the cover is Colin Kaepernick, the former NFL QB who birthed debate over “acceptable” behavior during national anthem recitals when he decided to sit or kneel during them last season. For Colin, refusing to stand was a means of bringing awareness to the inequality of treatment for Black and Brown people by law enforcement.

“I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color,” Kaepernick said back in 2016. “To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.”

Since then, kneeling, sitting, stretching, sleeping … doing anything other than standing during The National Anthem has irked folks that, well, probably voted for Donald Trump. Trump as usual, noticed there were a lot of his supporters bothered by famous Black men calling for equality, so to create distraction from his failures as a leader, he threw them a bone last Friday.

“Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a bitch off the field right now, out, he’s fired. He’s fired,'” Trump said during a Luther Strange rally in Alabama. “You know, some owner is going to do that. He’s going to say, ‘That guy that disrespects our flag, he’s fired.’ And that owner, they don’t know it [but] they’ll be the most popular person in this country.”

Let’s be clear: this feud is GOOD for Trump. Like majorly good. It creates a national debate which distracts from his family using private emails for official White House business (‘Lock them up!’), a failure to get a wall built, or health care legislation passed or a resolution that actually deters North Korea from doing North Korea type-ish. And by calling Kaepernick, and other athletes tired of seeing police officers murder minorities with complete immunity, “sons of bitches,” Trump stokes the pending race war those very fine folks in Charlottesville are salivating over.

Which is why the Kaepernick omission from the SI cover is particularly baffling. This is all BECAUSE OF HIM and his decision to protest and speak up for what he feels is right. Even Steph Curry blasted the cover. “That was terrible,” Curry said when asked about the SI artwork. “…If you don’t have (Kaepernick) front and center, something’s wrong.”

Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr backed his point guard, saying he didn’t understand how Colin wasn’t on the cover either. Kap isn’t the only important person missing from the cover. When he first took a knee, Megan Rapinoe was the next athlete to follow. She’s a White professional soccer player for US National Team and Seattle Reign FC.

ATLANTA, GA – SEPTEMBER 18: Megan Rapinoe #15 kneels during the National Anthem prior to the match between the United States and the Netherlands at Georgia Dome on September 18, 2016 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

And then you have to wonder why Shad Khan did make the cover when he donated $1 million to Trump’s campaign. Sure, it’s nice that he locked arms with his players in LONDON on Sunday, but Trump was a racist, bigot back when Khan handed him a fat check last year.

Whether you stand or not during the national anthem is an individual decision. Still, following these protests, how great would it be if we all stood during the anthem, and stood proudly. This country BELONGS TO US just much as it does anyone at a Luther Strange or Trump rally. And by standing now, at this point, when we’re expected not to, we’re telling Trump and all his supporters through actions that, “We are real Americans. Free to kneel one week, and stand the next. We’re more patriotic than you ever could hope to be because we understand what this country is really all about. трахаться!” That last bit is Russian for “F*ck off” in case you’re wondering.

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Exclusive: The Bullet Scars That Will Forever Haunt Sheryl Lee Ralph’s Son, Etienne Maurice



Sheryl Lee Ralph shared a graphic photo on Instagram earlier this week of her son, Etienne Maurice, laying in a hospital bed bandaged up from bullet wounds. The purpose of the image was to be yet another voice calling to end gun violence.

On Wednesday, students across the country walked out of class to protest against gun violence, something that hit home for Ralph four years ago. “This mother wants #gunreform now! #guncontrol now,” she wrote.

It was during a night out in West Philadelphia that Ralph’s then 22-year-old child was robbed at gunpoint and shot three times; twice in the leg and one which grazed his forehead.

So as Ralph joined Wednesday’s national conversation about gun laws, HipHollywood talked exclusively with Etienne who shared exactly what went down the night a gun could have taken his life for good.

“I was shot four years ago, November 9 … I was black out drunk. The next thing I know I remember I woke up in the hospital, doctor said I had two bullet holes in my leg and a grazed bullet hole above my eyebrow.”

Maurice, who was robbed for his iPhone and his wallet, went on to tell us that this is something that he is reminded of constantly. “Having been shot is something that I carry with me every day. I still have numbness at the bottom of my leg from the nerve damage.”

And while he will always remember how he felt knowing his life almost ended, Etienne had a hard time fathoming how his famous mother felt. “We had the conversation about it last week and she said she peed on herself,” he told us.

For Maurice, he’s proud to see young children use their voices to make change. “There’s so many angles where we can talk about gun violence and how it’s effecting different communities,” he said. “Gun reform needs to take place now.”

Since that night, he hasn’t picked up a drink and has been now sober for four years. As for the suspects, a father-son duo, they are behind bars for attempted man slaughter.

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