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Colin Kaepernick named Amnesty International Ambassador of Conscience

Amnesty International awarded Colin Kaepernick its Ambassador of Conscience Award on Saturday for his public protest ...

Posted: Apr 22, 2018 3:58 PM
Updated: Apr 22, 2018 3:58 PM

Amnesty International awarded Colin Kaepernick its Ambassador of Conscience Award on Saturday for his public protest against racial and social injustice.

"The Ambassador of Conscience award celebrates the spirit of activism and exceptional courage, as embodied by Colin Kaepernick," Salil Shetty, the human rights group's secretary-general, said in a statement. "He is an athlete who is now widely recognized for his activism because of his refusal to ignore or accept racial discrimination."

The award is Amnesty International's highest honor, according to its website. Past winners include Nelson Mandela, Malala Yousafzai, U2, Alicia Keys and Ai Weiwei. Kaepernick was presented with the award at a ceremony in Amsterdam, Netherlands.

Kaepernick, a former quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers, became the subject of controversy when he kneeled during the national anthem before several 2016 NFL preseason and regular-season games in protest of police shootings of African-American men and other social injustices faced by black people in the United States.

"To me, this is something that has to change," Kaepernick said in an August 2016 interview. "And when there's significant change and I feel like that flag represents what it's supposed to represent, and this country is representing people the way that it's supposed to, I'll stand."

His protest, which inspired other players to participate, sparked national debate over issues of police brutality and racial and social injustice. He was also widely criticized for what many onlookers characterized as showing disrespect to the US flag.

Kaepernick's kneeling drew the attention of President Donald Trump, who said during a September rally in Alabama that NFL owners should respond to the protests by firing the players.

"When high-profile people choose to take a stand for human rights, it emboldens many others in their struggles against injustice," Shetty said. "Colin Kaepernick's commitment is all the more remarkable because of the alarming levels of vitriol it has attracted from those in power."

In March 2017, Kaepernick became a free agent, but has yet to be offered a contract from any NFL team. In October, he filed a grievance against the league, accusing team owners of colluding to keep him from being signed.

Kaepernick said Saturday that he shares the award with "all of the countless people throughout the world combating the human rights violations of police officers, and their uses of oppressive and excessive force."

"I am here to join with you all in this battle against police violence," he said.

Since becoming a free agent last year, Kaepernick completed a September 2016 pledge to donate $1 million to organizations working in what he called oppressed communities.

Kaepernick was named GQ's Citizen of the Year in November and in December accepted the 2017 Sports Illustrated Muhammad Ali Legacy Award. He was also received the Eason Monroe Courageous Advocate Award from the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California in December.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 331863

Reported Deaths: 7494
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto22855279
Hinds22625437
Harrison19462326
Rankin14765286
Jackson14233251
Madison10658227
Lee10398178
Jones8713169
Forrest8164157
Lauderdale7528243
Lowndes6761150
Lamar665988
Lafayette6446124
Washington5497139
Bolivar4907134
Pearl River4889149
Oktibbeha476898
Panola4719112
Marshall4648106
Warren4612125
Pontotoc438873
Monroe4243137
Union424379
Neshoba4179180
Lincoln4088115
Hancock402788
Leflore3562125
Pike3511111
Tate348988
Alcorn343174
Sunflower342293
Adams331987
Yazoo330573
Scott330175
Simpson313690
Copiah311467
Itawamba309580
Coahoma308285
Tippah298368
Prentiss292563
Covington280183
Marion278980
Leake277975
Wayne269942
Grenada265688
George259851
Newton256064
Tishomingo235769
Winston235084
Jasper225748
Attala220373
Chickasaw215960
Stone209137
Holmes194974
Clay191554
Tallahatchie181542
Clarke181480
Calhoun177332
Smith175334
Yalobusha169240
Walthall140448
Lawrence137026
Greene134934
Amite131843
Noxubee131135
Perry130838
Montgomery130644
Carroll124531
Webster116732
Jefferson Davis112934
Tunica110827
Benton104425
Claiborne104231
Kemper100329
Humphreys99033
Franklin85923
Quitman83519
Choctaw80919
Wilkinson73232
Jefferson69028
Sharkey51518
Issaquena1696
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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 565510

Reported Deaths: 11468
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson828061584
Mobile44938853
Madison36534532
Tuscaloosa26589465
Shelby26409255
Montgomery25598623
Baldwin23319324
Lee16691179
Calhoun15030332
Morgan14877288
Etowah14563368
Marshall12723235
Houston11302292
Elmore10576217
St. Clair10449251
Limestone10420158
Cullman10198204
Lauderdale9883253
DeKalb9226191
Talladega8705187
Walker7545286
Autauga7388113
Jackson7216117
Blount7147139
Colbert6522142
Coffee5962131
Dale5224117
Russell463942
Chilton4603117
Covington4502125
Franklin439781
Tallapoosa4343156
Escambia414782
Chambers3813124
Dallas3674163
Clarke361562
Marion3354106
Pike323179
Lawrence3176101
Winston289672
Bibb276165
Geneva267383
Marengo257367
Barbour241860
Pickens238862
Butler233571
Hale230578
Fayette223863
Henry203345
Cherokee192347
Randolph192244
Monroe190241
Washington174539
Macon167252
Crenshaw163457
Clay161859
Cleburne158445
Lamar149138
Lowndes143854
Wilcox128431
Bullock125342
Conecuh117730
Coosa115229
Perry109628
Sumter107532
Greene95935
Choctaw63125
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