NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick has started a Black Panther Party-inspired youth camp to make sure kids "know their rights."
The "Know Your Rights Camp" is, according to its website, a "free campaign for youth to raise awareness on higher education, self empowerment, and instruction to properly interact with law enforcement in various scenarios." Its stated goal is to "help build a stronger generation of people that will create the change that is much needed in this world.
The first camp was held in Oakland, California, Saturday, where Kaepernick, who has taken heat for not standing during the national anthem, focused on 10 basic rights he says every child should know they have, including freedom, health safety and education. Those 10 basic rights are inspired by the same basic rights the Black Panther Party teaches, according to the Huffington Post.
“We’re here today to fight back and give you all lessons to combat the oppressive issues that our people face on a daily basis," Kaepernick reportedly told camp participants. “We’re going to give you knowledge on policing history, what the systems of policing in America were based on, and we’re also going to teach you skills to make sure you always make it home safely.”
“It’s exciting for me because I see a lot of hope, I see a lot of what is to come,” Kaepernick said, according to the Undefeated. “And if you look at a lot of movements in past history, it started at a youth level and has built. And that’s really where change is created. When youth come up and they’re built in that culture of, ‘I know what this means, I know why this is happening and I also know how to help create change now.’”
Currently, the youth camp is only offered in Oakland, but Kaepernick is looking to expand his movement.
“What we’ve done here today in Oakland, we want to do all over the country, in cities all over this country, by bringing together local leaders, local activists and local youth, and not only giving them the skills and lessons they need, but we want to show them how much we love and value them," Kaepernick said.