President Donald Trump has made something of a hobby out of attacking private citizens, Colin Kaepernick among them. During a rally held in Alabama last night, he referred to Kaepernick (among others), though not by name, saying that NFL owners should, when faced with a player kneeling during the national anthem, “get that son of a bitch off the field.” This demonstrated an already-evident dearth of intellect and a possible lack of understanding that Kaepernick is off the field due mainly if not entirely to his silent protests against police brutality.
Kaepernick’s mom, Teresa, who has never shied away from expressing her beliefs on Twitter—especially when it comes to her kids—responded in the most appropriate way possible:
I called Teresa today to ask her how it feels to have the president of the United States trashing her son and his right to protest over and over again. She made clear that she speaks only for herself, and never for Colin, but here is a conversation with Teresa, which has been lightly edited for clarity:
Teresa: It’s been quite interesting.
Deadspin: Has it stopped being interesting this year, though?
Teresa: Uh, no. It hasn’t. You know, I always say to my husband ... we don’t get too upset over most of this stuff anymore. He and I will look at each other and say, “We do lead an interesting life, I guess.” I mean, how else are you gonna look at it? I can’t be losing sleep over this kind of stuff. It’s disappointing that Trump is the president and talks the way he talks, though. It’s just incredibly disappointing. Rick and I had never been real political people, but prior to when all of the campaigning was going on, I mean, it didn’t take more than a minute to realize we didn’t want Donald Trump in the presidency. The guy is not all there, and I can’t tell you how shocked we were when he won, but we have been pretty vocal about it since long before Colin took a knee. So, we have some pretty strong feelings about that part of things. To see this man that you have no respect for, basically because of all that he’s done in this presidency so far, slandering my kid publicly ...
This is the third time from the podium—always at his rallies, never at a regular press conferences where someone questioned him. It’s always at his rallies, and he’s always pandering and playing to the crowd. There are a lot of racist people in that crowd, a lot of people that are just looking for something to get hyped about, and this is the kind of thing he does. It’s like a bully on a playground, I guess. It’s almost what I’ve come to expect from him and what most of us have come to expect from him. It’s disappointing though, and I’m kind of surprised that he went at the whole NFL the way that he did—not just Colin—because he does have so many friends in the NFL, as he said himself. So we’ll see what happens with that. I don’t know if anything will, but I thought it was a big mistake on his part. Just a terribly bad decision.
We didn’t watch his rally, I don’t watch rallies. He’s not playing to me anyway. But I saw on Twitter that he’d said it and I said to my husband, “What the heck,” and I looked to see what was said and I thought, “Aw man, this is just ridiculous that he continues to attack private citizens like this and continues to not be able to see what freedom of speech is and that he just refuses to acknowledge those kind of things.” Yet at the same time, in Charlottesville, he would not call out the Nazis, not call out the white supremacists, but he’s calling out these guys who are peacefully kneeling and asking for their country to do better.
Deadspin: It’s wild.
Teresa: It is wild. As a mom you’re protective of your kid. I grant you he’s a 29-year-old man, he doesn’t need my protection, but boy, somebody insults somebody you love, and your first instinct is to really wanna just go after him. There’s really no way I can do that. I made a couple comments to him, he’s not gonna see my comments to him, it really isn’t relevant for me to do that, but I’m an opinionated person ... I’ve actually been on Twitter a long time, and it’s pretty funny, because I dropped Twitter a few years ago. It just got to be people coming at me and stuff. I picked it up in the last year or so and put my real name on it, but changed my handle so that it wasn’t associated with Colin or the family or anything like that. It was just me, and I never had very many followers. Well, this is nuts. I think I’ve picked up ... close to 7,000 followers or something like that. This is just crazy. I didn’t think that what I said was that big of a deal, and really kind of a typical response from me. I’m a little bit glib!
Deadspin: When I saw that, I was dying. I was like, “Yeah, you don’t piss off a mom.”
Teresa: I texted my sisters. I have four sisters and said, “You’re not gonna believe this. The president just called me a bitch,” and they went into one and we just laughed about it. We ended up making a lot of jokes about it, and my one sister said, “Oh gosh, next he’ll be calling you Rocket Mom.” So we were laughing about it, and that’s about all you can do.
Deadspin: Yeah, I’m sure despite the very frustrating and serious issues here, I’m sure Colin seeing his mom just go off like that on Twitter is still pretty funny. It’s still your mom.
Teresa: Yeah, what are you gonna do? We are all just sitting back seeing what’s gonna happen in this country. There’s not much we can really do.
After we talked, Trump returned to trashing Kaepernick and other NFL players who have used their platforms to protest police brutality and racial inequality.
Tomorrow should be an interesting day in the NFL.