Colin Kaepernick

Kaepernick shares national magazine cover with civil rights icon

The New Yorker cover with Colin Kaepernick in January 2018.
The New Yorker cover with Colin Kaepernick in January 2018.

Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick is depicted kneeling with the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and another NFL player on the most recent cover of The New Yorker Magazine.

Kaepernick, who graduated from Turlock’s Pitman High in 2006 before attending the University of Nevada-Reno, started a national debate in 2016 when he began kneeling during the national anthem in silent protest of racial injustice centered in the African American community.

Artist Mark Ulriksen drew inspiration for the cover art – titled “In Creative Battle” in which King, Kaepernick and Seattle’s Michael Bennett lock arms and kneel in silent reflection – from a simple question.

"I asked myself, ‘What would king be doing if he were around today?” the San Francisco-based artist said in Francoise Mouly’s article in The New Yorker. “I’m sure if King were around today, he’d be disappointed at the slow pace of progress: two steps forward, 20 steps back. Or 10 yards back, as the metaphor may be."

In his acceptance speech King accepted the 1964 Nobel Peace Prize, King said, “I accept the Nobel Prize for Peace at a moment when 22 million Negroes of the United States of American are engaged in a creative battle to end the long night of racial injustice.”