Former 49er Claims He’s Being Blackballed After Kneeling With Kaepernick

Eric Reid feels he is being punished for activism.

Eric Reid (right) kneels with Colin Kaepernick. Photo by Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP.

The frenzied first few days of 2018 NFL free agency are winding down, with the bulk of high-profile players inking multimillion-dollar contracts. One player, though, has been waiting patiently by the phone: Eric Reid, a safety with the San Francisco 49ers who has been a leading voice in player protests the last two seasons.

The safety market is a bit jammed right now, what with Tyrann Mathieu, Kenny Vaccaro, and others still available and the Seattle Seahawks fielding possible trade offers for Earl Thomas. So there’s a non-zero chance that Reid will find a suitor once a few superior talents fall off the board. There’s no denying Reid’s abilities on the field.

The former first-round draft pick is only 26 years old, and in 13 games last year, he showed his versatility, shifting from free safety to strong safety and even logging some time at starting linebacker after Navorro Bowman was released in October. With two interceptions and 67 tackles recorded in 2017, he’s amassed 10 and 327 respectively in his career, been named to an all-rookie team, and earned a trip to the Pro Bowl in 2013.

Even though he suffered a mild knee injury, by the end of the year, 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan described him as “great” and said he was “playing his best football.”

And yet, nothing. No offers. No rumors of offers, even, at a time when agents and various hangers-on are bombarding NFL reporters with all manner of gossip about what player might catch the gleam of some general manager’s eye.

For his part, Reid isn’t holding back as to why he remains unsigned: He says it’s because he participated in on-field protests about state-sanctioned violence and the inequitable treatment of blacks by law enforcement.

“The notion that I can be a great signing for your team for cheap, not because of my skill set but because I’ve protested systemic oppression, is ludicrous,” Reid tweeted March 15, 2018. “If you think is, then your mindset is part of the problem too.”

The blame, according to Reid, shouldn’t be placed on NFL GMs. Instead, it’s NFL owners who have made it clear that they want nothing to do with him. “People who know football know who can play. People who know me, know my character,” he wrote.

Reid was one of the first NFL players to take a knee at the start of the 2016 season. He continued last year, spearheading a coalition comprised of current and former players which demanded funds from league to address social justice issues. Reid left the coalition in November, alleging that the NFL was attempting to neuter the group’s impact and message and buy off the protesters. (There are numerous prior examples of the NFL using its ample financial resources in an attempt to win the PR war and put an end to a spate of negative press.)

As Reid told Slate at the time, “[NFL Commissioner] Roger Goodell is trying to make this as easy for the owners to agree to as possible so that — again, their goal is to end the protests.”

In an interview with the New Orleans Times-Picayune, he went further, describing the relatively meager sum the NFL will be contributing as “reactionary.”

“I think it's great they want to help our communities. It's going to take more than $3 million, which is what [the NFL] gave the Coalition for systemic oppression,” he said. “It's a long fight.”

This is not to say that Reid is definitely being blackballed, as is the case for his former teammate Colin Kaepernick. An ongoing lawsuit filed by Kaepernick may unearth some proof of a concerted effort by the NFL to exile him, but in the interim, two teams have already said the quiet part out loud when it comes to players who have protested.

Earlier in March 2018, Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross told the New York Daily News that he’d somehow force his team to stand during the anthem then quickly tried to walk it back. Sources told the Houston Chronicle that no one who kneeled would ever suit up for the Houston Texans, though the team denied that the line existed.

But Reid has already accepted the possibility that he may be similarly and unjustly sidelined. “It's a possibility,” Reid said at the end of the season. “There are probably teams that won't want to talk to me because of it. I'm hopeful that I will be on a team next year, but if not, again, that's okay with me.”

The suspicion that football’s powers that be view his activism as an unnecessary distraction has been on Reid’s mind since August.

“If I’m not on a team next year, I’ll be at home unhappy that I’m not on a team,” he said. “But I’ll be satisfied that I did what I believed was right. And that’s being a voice for the voiceless and standing up for the oppressed.”


"Seventy percent of the Earth is covered with water, now you camp on it!" proudly declares Smithfly on the website for its new camping boat — the Shoal Tent.

Why have we waited so long for camping equipment that actually lets us sleep on the water? Because it's an awful idea, that's why.

"The world is your waterbed," Smithfly says on its site. But the big difference is that no one has ever had to worry about falling asleep and then drowning on their waterbed.

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While it is possible that one could wade into the water, unzip the tent, have a pleasant slumber, and wake up in the morning feeling safe and refreshed, there are countless things that could go terribly wrong.

The tent could float down the river and you wake up in the middle of nowhere.

You could have to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night.

This guy.

It could spring a leak and you could drown while wrapped up in eight feet of heavy nylon.

A strong current could tip the tent-boat over.

There isn't any way to steer the darn thing.

This guy.

Mashable shared a charming video of the tent on Twitter and it was greeted with a chorus of people sharing the many ways one could die while staying the night in the Shoal Tent.

Oh yeah, it's expensive, too.

Even though the general public seems to think the Shoal Tent is a terrible idea, according to the Smithfly's website, it's currently sold out due to "popular demand" and it will be "available in 6-8 weeks." Oh, and did we mention it costs $1,999?

via zoezimmm / Imgur

There are few more perniciously dangerous conspiracy theories being shared online than the idea that vaccines cause autism.

This has led to a decline in Americans vaccinating their children, resulting in a massive increase in measles. This year has already seen over 1,200 cases of measles, a disease that was eradicated in the U.S. nearly 20 years ago.

A 2015 Pew Research study found that 83% of Americans think the measles vaccine is safe, while 9% think it's not. Another 7% are not sure. But when you look at the polls that include parents of minors, the numbers get worse, 13% believe that the measles vaccine is unsafe.

There is zero truth to the idea that vaccines cause autism. In fact, a recent study of over 650,000 children found there was no link whatsoever.

RELATED: A new study of over 650,000 children finds — once again — that vaccines don't cause autism

A great example of the lack of critical thinking shown by anti-vaxxers was a recent exchange on Facebook shared to Imgur by zoezimmm.

A parent named Kenleigh at a school in New Mexico shared a photo of a sign at reads: "Children will not be enrolled unless an immunization record is presented and immunizations are up-to-date."

This angered a Facebook user who went on a senseless tirade against vaccinations.

"That's fine, I'll just homeschool my kids," she wrote. At least they won't have to worry about getting shot up in school or being bullied, or being beat up / raped by the teachers!"

To defend her anti-vaccination argument, she used a factually incorrect claim that Amish people don't vaccinate their children. She also incorrectly claimed that the MMR vaccine is ineffective and used anecdotal evidence from her and her father to claim that vaccinations are unnecessary.

She also argued that "every human in the world is entitled to their own opinion." Which is true, but doesn't mean that wildly incorrect assumptions about health should be tolerated.

She concluded her argument with a point that proves she doesn't care about facts: "It doesn't matter what you say is not going to change my mind."

RELATED: 12 medical professionals shared their most memorable anti-vaxxer stories and you won't stop face-palming

While the anti-vaxxer was incorrect in her points, it must also be pointed out that some of the people who argued with her on Facebook were rude. That should never be tolerated in this type of discourse, but unfortunately, that's the world of social media.

Here's the entire exchange:

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via zoezimmm / imgur

via zoezimmm / imgur

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via zoezimmm / imgur

The post received a ton of responses on imgur. Here are just a few:

"'In my opinion...' 'I believe...' That's not how facts work."

"You're entitled to your opinion. And everyone else is entitled to call you a dumbass."

"'What I do with my children is no concern to you at all.' Most of the time, true. When your kid might give mine polio, not true."

"If my child can't bring peanut butter, your child shouldn't bring preventable diseases."

It's important to call out people who spread dangerous views, especially how they pertain to health, on social media. But people should do so with respect and civility.


He photographed Nazi atrocities and buried the negatives. The unearthed images are unforgettable.

He risked his life to leave a "historical record of our martyrdom."

via Yad Vashem and Archive of Modern Conflict, 2007

In September 1939, the Nazis invaded Poland. By April 1940, the gates closed on the Lodz Ghetto, the second largest in the country after Warsaw.

Throughout the war, over 210,000 people would be imprisoned in Lodz.

Among those held captive was Henryk Ross. He was a Jewish sports photographer before the Nazi invasion and worked for the the ghetto's Department of Statistics during the war. As part of his official job, he took identification photos of the prisoners and propaganda shots of Lodz' textile and leather factories.

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via Imgur

Every few years there's something that goes mega viral because people can't decide what it is.

There was the famous "is it blue and black, or white and gold" dress?

There was the audio recording that said either "yanny" or "Laurel."

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Rochester NY Airport Security passing insulting notes to travelers caught on tape

Neil Strassner was just passing through airport security, something he does on a weekly basis as part of his job. That's when a contract airport security employee handed him a small piece of folded cardboard. Strassner, 40, took the paper and continued on his way. He only paused when he heard the security employee shouting back at him, "You going to open the note?"

When he unfolded the small piece of paper, Strassner was greeted with an unprompted insult. "You ugly!!!"

According to Strassner, and in newly released CCTV of the incident, the woman who handed him the note began laughing loudly.

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