Lansing, Mich.- Michael Lynn III, Matthew Abdullah, Kabbash Richards and Roje Williams created controversy earlier this year when they took a knee during the national anthem at one of their Lansing Catholic football games.
All four players received some kind of discipline from the school and were benched during the football game.
The Lansing Catholic students did it to protest social injustice and it caught Colin Kaepernick’s attention. Last weekend, the boys skyped Kaepernick for 20 minutes and talked about their actions.
“He showed me to be courageous and to stand up for what I believe in,” Richards said.
Kaepernick came under scrutiny last year when he didn’t stand for the national anthem during an NFL game, a protest for what he says is police brutality against young African Americans.
This caused a nation-wide protest, some saying it was blatant disrespect for the flag, but it also sparked a movement by others, including these four students.
“I‘ve had people call me the n-word and we brought it up to the office and they haven’t done anything about it,” Abdullah said.
And like Kaepernick, these players didn’t escape without problems.
Abdullah and Lynn III have since transfered to Holt and Lansing Sexton.
“I wanted to go elsewhere, I didn’t like it there, I didn’t feel safe,” Abdullah said.
Lansing Catholic administration declined to go on camera.