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Colin Kaepernick kneels on cover of TIME

By Alex Butler
Colin Kaepernick kneels on cover of TIME
San Francisco 49ers Antoine Bethea (41) and Eli Harold (58) hold up clenched fists as QB Colin Kaepernick (7) kneels during the National Anthem before playing the Los Angeles Rams at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, California on September 12. 2016. Kaepernick started protests during the National Anthem against racial injustice that are spreading. Photo by Terry Schmitt/UPI | License Photo

SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 22 (UPI) -- "Stick to sports" is officially retired.

TIME magazine confirmed that with its latest cover, featuring San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick kneeling during the national anthem.

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"TIME's new cover: The perilous fight. How national anthem protests led by Colin Kaepernick are fueling a debate," TIME tweeted Thursday.

Since taking a knee for injustice during the preseason and continuing to do it through the regular season, Kaepernick has been joined by numerous NFL players, hoping to bring about change.

"The idea that Colin Kaepernick's refusal to stand during the national anthem is unpatriotic fails doubly: first, in a mistaken notion of what real patriotism is, and second in missing a larger point," John McWhorter wrote in TIME.

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Kaepernick's stance has prompted discussion regarding the treatment of minorities in the United States and police brutality.

TIME's Sean Gregory interviewed Philadelphia Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins, New England Patriots' Devin McCourty, and Cleveland Browns legend Jim Brown. The issue will be released on Oct. 3. USWNT star Megan Rapinoe began kneeling after Kaepernick at soccer games and the WNBA has also taken notice.

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Earlier this week, Kaepernick said he has gotten death threats because of his choice to protest.

"If something like that were to happen, you've proved my point," Kaepernick recently told reporters. "It'll be loud and clear why it happened."

Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr is one of the latest sports personalities to advocate for Kaepernick.

"It's probably one of the best things to come out of the Kaepernick issue is that people are talking, and that's a good thing," Kerr told reporters on Wednesday. "No matter what side of the spectrum you're on, I would hope that every American is disgusted with what is going on around the country, what just happened in Tulsa two days ago with Terence Crutcher."

The backup quarterback also plans to donate $1 million to local communities, donating $100,000 each month for the next 10 months.

Kaepernick, 28, is signed with the 49ers through 2020. He completed 59 percent of his passes for 1,615 yards, six touchdowns, and five interceptions in 2015. He is 27-20 as a starting quarterback since 2011.

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