Stephen A. Smith may be the best-known and highest-paid employee in the history of ESPN, but Black Twitter is having a love affair with Max Kellerman because of his views supporting exiled quarterback Colin Kaepernick.
On the latest episode of the immensely popular ESPN show “First Take,” Kellerman endeared himself to the urban masses after adamantly supporting Kaepernick’s return to the NFL.
Smith, who is supportive of the social issues that Kaepernick first began to kneel for — including police brutality and judicial injustice — said he does not believe that Kaepernick wants to play in the NFL anymore. He also says he believes that Kaep, 32, is more invested in being a “martyr” than a player in the league.
Kellerman, who articulated persuasively that he is aware of his “white privilege,” said he is using his vast platform to “speak truth” to the flagrant injustices perpetrated against Kaepernick — especially when one understands that Kaepernick has never violated any U.S. laws. Kaepernick has also never broken any team rules or NFL regulations.
Smith, conversely, did say he wanted Kaepernick back in the NFL and that the former quarterback was wronged by the NFL. However, Smith departs from Kellerman’s view in saying Kaepernick’s methodology has been highly questionable of a man who says he wants to get back in the league.
For example, Smith says Kaepernick’s last-minute change of venue, coupled with donning the highly inflammatory “Kunte Kinte” T-shirt, were asinine actions that made NFL owners queasy and hesitant to sign him. Smith also reasoned that an unemployed man cannot dictate the terms of an interview with his potential boss — and then wear the T-shirt with a slave’s name to that meeting.
During the heated debate, Kellerman also expressed his view of what America should be working to become, which is justice and equality for everyone. By contrast Smith articulated that Blacks must operate with the harsh realities of today, including being very careful with their interactions with the police.
Fans weighed in on the two men’s compelling arguments with Black Twitter mostly siding with Kellerman. Here is a small sampling of the respondents.
#FirstTake today is 3 Black men telling a white man to conform to the system. And the lone white man telling them not to trust the system.
— Power to da Ppl ✊🏾 (@Qadeer_P) November 18, 2019
Max Kellerman is the best damn debater at ESPN…. when it comes to social issues! He cannot be touched by Stephen A or anyone else at that network. #FirstTake
— 𝕭ã𝖑𝖑𝖉𝖎ñ𝖍𝖔 ™ 🇧🇲 (@Balldinho) November 18, 2019
Max you're invited to Thanksgiving dinner…. I know you're probably use to eating at 12… So dont be alarm if we start 3 or 4 hours later… Thanks for speaking truth to power and understanding your previlage #FirstTake
— My Momma love me (@shantra85) November 18, 2019
Stephen A said the NFL agreed to have Nike cameras there. Max read a statement from Nike saying it was a lie by the NFL…Stephen A says "I don't give a damn about that because Kaep could've said that in an interview but he didnt clear it up" 😂😂😂 Whattt? #FirstTake pic.twitter.com/SyPWAPMnmF
— Lil Intro Vert (@TGI_Adrian) November 18, 2019