Marine veteran calls Colin Kaepernick a 'national disgrace', says former NFL star is 'extorting the black community'
Jeremy Staat, who is running in California's 8th District as a Republican, also said he was 'tired of seeing him celebrated like he's a hero'
A marine veteran who toured Iraq and is now running for Congress in California slammed Colin Kaepernick for "pulling the racism and victim card" and claimed that the former NFL star was "extorting the black community."
Jeremy Staat, who also played in the NFL and turned out for the Pittsburgh Steelers and the St. Louis Rams at the turn of the century, made the comments during a recent episode of Fox & Friends where he called Kaepernick an "absolute disgrace."
"We have a professional athlete who has pulled the race card, he's pulled the victim card," Staat said. "He knew what he was getting into when he decided to kneel and now, he's going to go ahead and capitalize on this by essentially extorting the black community."
Staat's comments come shortly after Kaepernick—who has not played in the NFL after protesting against racial injustice and systemic oppression by kneeling during the national anthem in the 2016 season—recently spoke at the "Indigenous People's Sunrise Ceremony" held on Alcatraz Island in San Francisco.
Also known as "Unthanksgiving," the ceremony has been held annually since 1975 to honor the indigenous peoples of the Americas and promote their rights.
This year's event marked the 50th anniversary of the Native Americans first occupying the island in 1969, and protesting for the next 19 months.
"Spent the morning at the Indigenous People’s Sunrise Ceremony on the 50th anniversary of the Occupation of Alcatraz," Kaepernick tweeted on Thanksgiving. "The US government has stolen over 1.5 billion acres of land from Indigenous people. Thank you to my Indigenous family, I’m with you today and always."
Staat also talked about a recent fundraising letter he wrote for his congressional campaign—he is running in California's 8th District as a Republican—where he called Kaepernick a "national disgrace" and said he was "tired of seeing him celebrated like he's a hero."
"Help me send a strong message to left-wing radicals in Washington that America is fed-up with their game plan, like they are fed up with Colin Kaepernick," he pleaded to supporters. "Unlike Colin Kaepernick, this NFL pro ALWAYS stood for the Red, White and Blue, with toes on the line."