Beyonce made a surprise appearance to present Colin Kaepernick with SI's Muhammad Ali Legacy Award on Tuesday night -- and took aim at his critics that somehow STILL don't get why he took a knee.
"It’s been said that racism is so American that when we protest racism we’re protesting America. But let’s be very clear -- Colin has always been very respectful of the individuals who selflessly serve and protect our country and our communities and our families," Beyonce said at the Barclays Center.
"His message is solely focused on social injustice for historically disenfranchised people. Let’s not get that mistaken.”
It's a similar stance to the one Jay-Z took last month on his 4:44 Tour ... when Jay got behind the NFL player protests.
Beyonce also thanked Kaepernick for his "selfless heart" and "conviction" ... sacrificing his own livelihood to make the world a better place for everyone -- something Ali fought for throughout his life.
As for Kaep ... the QB said he was accepting the award for the people -- and made it clear that he doesn't need football to keep fighting for them.
'With or without the NFL’s platform, I will continue to work for the people, because my platform is the people.”