Colin Kaepernick visited Alcatraz Island on Thursday to participate in the Indigenous People’s Sunrise Gathering, an event also known as “Un-Thanksgiving Day.”
The annual gathering commemorates the Native Americans who occupied the prison from 1969 to 1971 to reclaim the island and have it turned into an Indian educational center.
The former San Francisco 49ers quarterback gave a speech after a Native American elder gave him two honorary eagle feathers, The Mercury News reported.
“Our fight is the same fight,” Kaepernick said. “We’re all fighting for our justice, for our freedom.”
Today, I was on Alcatraz Island at the Indigenous People’s Sunrise Gathering, in solidarity with those celebrating their culture and paying respects to those that participated in the 19 month occupation of Alcatraz in an effort to force 🇺🇸 to honor the Treaty of Fort Laramie. pic.twitter.com/KdNtY3dp72
— Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) November 24, 2017
GQ magazine recently named Kaepernick “Citizen of the Year.”
In 2016, he knelt during the national anthem at a preseason game to protest law enforcement’s treatment of African Americans. The act became a movement that has drawn both criticism and support.
Kaepernick opted out of his contract with the 49ers in March and has since been a free agent.