A California sheriff’s office wants Colin Kaepernick to see firsthand what kind of training they go through.
Kaepernick, the San Francisco 49ers quarterback, has sparked national debate after he revealed he wasn’t standing for the national anthem before preseason games to protest the oppression of black people in the U.S. Some people have praised his right to free speech while others have called him unpatriotic.
“I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color,” Kaepernick told NFL Media. “To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.”
It’s a common policy to place officers on paid leave after they’re involved in a shooting while law enforcement agencies conduct investigations.
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But there was one particular comment by Kaepernick that stood out to the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office in Oakland, California.
“You can become a cop in six months, and don’t have to have the same amount of training as a cosmetologist, that’s insane,” Kaepernick said in a post-game interview.
A Facebook post by the sheriff’s office called out that comment and invited Kaepernick to come see their training for himself and have an “open dialogue.”
“The (Regional Training Center) is currently in session hosting our 156th and 157th basic police academies,” the post reads. “In addition to the academy, we train thousands of law enforcement officers from throughout the state and country in all aspects of our profession, including use of force.”
Basic recruit training varies across states, but according to the Bureau of Justice statistics it ranges anywhere from four weeks to six months. That doesn’t include field training.