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November 22, 2021 10 min
“I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses Black people and people of color. To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way.” -- Colin Kaepernick.

The powerful new, young adult novel KNEEL by Candace Buford pays homage to Kaepernick’s iconic stand for civil rights. Following the wrongful shooting of a young Black man who is killed in the neighborhood, Russell’s best friend, the high school team quarterback, is unfairly arrested and suspended from the team. In an effort to seek change, Russell decides to take a knee during the pre-game national anthem. In one instant, he falls from local stardom and becomes a target for hatred. But with his best friend unjustly detained by police, Russell must speak up and risk everything or live in fear.

KNEEL explores themes of social activism, racial injustice, toxic masculinity and the crushing pressure on student athletes. Author Candace Buford can discuss the compelling new novel and how the actions of Colin Kaepernick inspired her to tell this story.
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