Colin Kaepernick discussed coming to terms with his racial identity in an interview aired Thursday on CBS News.
In an effort to promote his new graphic novel, “Change the Game,” the former NFL quarterback opened up about the obstacles he faced growing up with white adoptive parents, a process that occasionally led to problematic or racist disagreements, he said.
“I know my parents loved me. But there were still very troublesome things that I went through,said the Kaepernick.
“I think it was important to show that no, this can happen in your own home and how we collectively move forward as we tackle racism that is being perpetuated,” the 35-year-old added.
Kaepernick said she wrote the graphic novel to help children who may be going through similar challenges around identity, family and major life decisions.
He shares his own story in the book, including an anecdote about wanting to have braids to look more like NBA Hall of Famer Allen Iverson.
Kaepernick shared in the interview that his mother thought the hairstyle did not make him look professional and instead made him look like a thug. It was a moment that, according to Kaepernick, shaped his sense of identity moving forward.
“Those become spaces where it’s like, ‘Okay, how do I navigate the situation now?’ But it has also informed why I have long hair today,” she said in the interview.
Kaepernick became a leader in the social justice movement when he began taking a knee during the National Anthem during his days playing for the San Francisco 49ers.
Since then, she has focused on charity and other forms of activism, and has also signed endorsement deals with Nike and other companies, as well as having her own Netflix animated series.