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According to Colin Kaepernick, race has always been a part of his life and in new book, “I Color Myself Different” the former NFL QB recalls a story from a seemingly simple kindergarten assignment.
In a new autobiographical book released Tuesday, he remembers kids asking, “Why are you the only brown one in your family?” and “Why did you color yourself different?” Kaepernick, who is biracial and adopted by White parents, drew them in yellow crayons and himself in brown.
Colin Kaepernick is attempting a comeback amid publications
Since Colin’s departure from the league, he’s remained silent for the most part. More recently, however, he’s worked towards an NFL comeback while also working with legendary director, Spike Lee, on a lengthy docu-series to tell his story on his own terms.
Kaepernick, who played six seasons for the San Francisco 49ers, has been out of the league since taking a knee to protest police brutality and racial injustice during NFL national anthems. His book brings a message about not fitting in as well as identity and inclusion.
Colin throws Hail Mary to first-time illustrator.
To color himself in the book, Kaepernick chose an artist he hadn’t met and who had never even illustrated a children’s book before.
“This is, by far, the most high-profile job I’ve ever done,” book illustrator Eric Wilkerson told “CBS Mornings” national correspondent Jericka Duncan.
“The fact that they took away the thing that he loved to do most in life just for standing up and speaking out, I just thought that was really horrible,” he said.
“Every scene that he was in, I wanted there to be this warm, happy color around him,” Wilkerson said, adding that Colin Kaepernick was involved in “every stage” of the project. “It is his story. This is an event that happened in his life,” Wilkerson said.
And for Wilkerson, so was someone closer to home. In drawing Kaepernick, he drew inspiration from his own biracial daughter, Leia, who was the same age as Kaepernick in the book.
“This book, from the start, has really been a love letter to my daughter,” Wilkerson said. Photos of Leia holding up a newspaper even became the book’s cover.