There is a certain irony in the fact that O.J. Simpson was released from prison Saturday night at the same time the nation is engaged in a debate about NFL players kneeling during the national anthem to protest racial injustice.
It’s a pretty good bet that if Simpson were playing today, he would not be taking a knee. He was never an activist.
He was at USC in 1968 when there was a threatened black boycott of the Olympics in Mexico City. The boycott never took place, although Tommie Smith and John Carlos each raised a fist while wearing a black glove on the medals stand to protest. Both were suspended by the U.S. Olympic Committee and returned home to death threats.
In a documentary on CBS Saturday night, a clip was aired in which Simpson was asked in 1968 about the proposed boycott.
“Right now I don’t want to be involved,’’ he said. “I’m not in track. I have no comment on the matter.’’