The #TakeAKnee protests have always been about race. Period.

( CNN) This didn’t start with a knee. Everyone seems to forget that before Colin Kaepernick knelt, he sat.

After sitting for the national anthem during the first three preseason competitions of the 2016 NFL season, the then-San Francisco 49 ers quarterback met with onetime NFL player and Army veteran Nate Boyer to discuss the optics of his protest.

It was Boyer who helped him and his teammates come to the decision to stoop, a more submissive alternative. Kaepernick was on board.

Because then, as now, stooping during the course of its National Anthem was never about the anthem itself. It wasn’t about the flag, or the military.