Beyoncè Presents Colin Kaepernick with SI’s Muhammad Ali Award
NEW YORK (AP) — Beyonce presented Colin Kaepernick with Sports Illustrated’s Muhammad Ali Legacy Award on Tuesday night, and Kaepernick promised that “with or without the NFL’s platform, I will continue to work for the people.”
Beyonce was brought out as a surprise presenter by comedian Trevor Noah. She said she was “proud and humbled” to present the award.
— BEYONCÉ LEGION (@Bey_Legion) December 6, 2017
“Colin took action with no fear of consequence or repercussion,” Beyonce said. “Only hope to change the world for the better. To change perception, to change the way we treat each other. Especially people of color.”
Last year’s Ali Award winner, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, called Kaepernick a “worthy recipient” during a video tribute.
“He fully embraced the risk to his career in order to remind Americans of the systemic racism that was denying African-Americans their opportunities to equal education, jobs, health and even their lives,” Abdul-Jabbar said.
Kaepernick began kneeling during the national anthem last season to protest racial inequality and police brutality. The demonstration sparked a wave of protests by NFL players during the anthem that repeatedly have been denounced by President Donald Trump.
Kaepernick parted ways with the San Francisco 49ers in March and hasn’t been signed by another team. He filed a grievance against the NFL in October alleging that he remains unsigned as a result of collusion by owners following his protests.
He spoke Tuesday about continuing Ali’s legacy for fighting social injustice, saying the boxing great “mentored me without ever meeting me.”
— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) December 6, 2017
“The footprints he leaves are large,” Kaepernick said, “and his life is and has been a multi-textured tapestry that is rich in love, wisdom, life lessons and human kindness. I can only hope that I’m taking steps toward walking on the footsteps that he has left behind for the world to follow.”
Kaepernick skipped the red carpet prior to the show and was not available for questions. The awards show will be broadcast Friday night on NBC Sports Network.
Kaepernick also recently was honored by the ACLU of Southern California with the Eason Monroe Courageous Advocate Award and was named GQ magazine’s “Citizen of the Year” for his activism, which included pledging $1 million to “organizations working in oppressed communities.”
Share your email below to receive our daily newsletter!
20 Pics Of Celebrities Protesting (PHOTOS)
20 photos Launch gallery
1. Kanye West joined Russell Simmons for the Occupy Wall Street protests.
1 of 20
2. Jay Z and the Brooklyn Nets stand in solidarity with Eric Garner.
2 of 20
3. Dave Chappelle posed with his hands up for Mike Brown on the red carpet.
3 of 20
4. J. Cole joined the protests in Ferguson after Mike Brown’s death.
4 of 20
5. Q-Tip joined the Mike Brown protests in New York.
5 of 20
6. Beyonce and Jay Z supported Trayvon Martin’s parents after his death.
6 of 20
7. Russell Brand joined the Occupy Wall Street protests.
7 of 20
8. Not only did Lupe Fiasco join the OWS protest, but he named a song after it.
8 of 20
9. Mark Ruffalo joined the human climate campaign.
9 of 20
10. Russell Simmons was joined by Katy Perry and Russell Brand during OWS.
10 of 20
11. Jay Leno protested the Brunei Hotels in Beverly Hills.
11 of 20
12. Susan Sarandon joined OWS protests.
12 of 20
13. Al Sharpton always gets his voice out to the masses during times of protest.
13 of 20
14. Rev Run, Minister Benjamin Chavez Muhammad, and Alicia Keys at the Mobilization for Education Hip-Hop Summit Action Network’s protest of Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s proposed education budget cuts.
14 of 20
15. Anne Hathaway protested at Union Square for the Occupy Wall Street campaign with her boyfriend Adam Shulman.
15 of 20
16. George Clooney spoke during “Save Darfur: Rally To Stop Genocide.”
16 of 20
17. Actor Sean Penn and Reverend Jesse Jackson marched with activists during an anti-war rally.
17 of 20
18. Spokesperson Hayden Panettiere at a conference for her Save the Whales campaign.
18 of 20
19. John Lennon and Yoko Ono staged a ‘bed-in for peace’ and intended to stay in bed for seven days as a protest against war and violence in the world.
19 of 20
20. Chris Brown, Wale, Nelly and a few more celebs posed with their hands up in support of Mike Brown.
20 of 20