Sometimes I like to write stream-of-consciousness posts when I’m procrastinating on more research intensive articles. This is yet another one of those situations. (Crafting a Narrative Pt. 3 will be ready soon)
Let’s have some fun together tearing apart this whole NFL v. Trump shitshow piece by agonizing piece. If we do this right, we’ll trigger literally everybody.
First, let’s address the elephant in the room. The entire frickin kneeling protest is an unorganized shitshow. When Kapernick started kneeling, it was vaguely in support of Black Lives Matter, but even BLM is a fucking mess of intersectional leftism. I’m not going to kill brain cells by going to their website again, but there was shit about ableism and transgenderism last time I went. On top of that, now everybody is kneeling for a thousand different reasons. Some are civil rights LARPing, some are protesting police brutality, some just hate Trump, and most of them have no fucking clue why they’re kneeling except for the fact that it pisses Trumphitler off.
Why the hell are you kneeling during the national anthem? Cops are employees of the state and local governments. They’re not even affiliated with the American flag, let alone somehow symbolizing it .Of course, if you’re smart, you don’t take the kneelers’ stated intentions at face value. The reality is that this protest against “systematic injustice” is really just a bunch of rich idiots being played like marionettes by no-kidding communists. Kapernick is in neck-deep with the commies, and his totalitarian milieu has polluted the NFL as a whole.
Why are you biting the hand that feeds you? We’ll get to the ridiculous reaction from fans in a minute, but it was a quite predictable reaction. Most football fans lean conservative and working class. Most conservative and working class folks are quite patriotic. They tend to either be veterans or know quite a few veterans. Disrespecting the flag is seen by them as pissing on their service and sacrifice. Any idiot can see this dynamic, and any idiot could have predicted the backlash that was created by these overprivileged multimillionaires disrespecting the flag.
It’s virtue signalling at its finest. There’s nothing accomplished by kneeling during the anthem. Not one cop is going to think twice about shooting some black kid just because some NFL player kneeled during the national anthem. Rather, the NFL is sending the message that they play ball with the SJW left. Unfortunately, the SJW left has resoundingly ignored the NFL… y’know because contact sports are icky and boring and not artisanal enough.
What of the boycotters? If there’s anything more pathetic than protesting a symbol that has nothing to do with the supposed object of your ire, it’s the people who are acting offended because other people won’t play patriotism olympics with them. By all means, boycott the NFL if you don’t like the message they’re sending. Hell, I’m watching much less NFL because I’m sick of all the personal interest stories, the “special interest here” month this and that, every other commercial being a PSA for some stupid cause, CTEs, and lefty virtue signalling around every corner (*cough* Bob Costas *cough*). What happened to football being about men in pads hitting one another? At the end of the day, though, respect or disrespect of the flag is a pretty stupid reason to change your entertainment habits. Why?
Because modern patriotic nationalism sucks. I completely get the connection between the flag and the service of our soldiers and veterans. I completely respect their courage and sacrifice. This is why I stand for the national anthem, even though I don’t participate. However, if there’s one thing that gets and eye roll from me in record time, it’s the old tired line of “freedom isn’t free. They fought and died for your freedoms.” Sorry, but when were my freedoms last threatened by a foreign power? Maybe WWII? That’s really stretching it, because the biggest threat to my freedoms in that era was FDR (internment camps, threatening the supreme court if they didn’t rule favorably, etc.). Maybe one could argue that the actions in Afghanistan were preserving our freedoms after 9/11, but again, the Patriot Act, TSA, and DHS are much bigger threats to my liberty than Al-quaeda has ever been. In my opinion, it’s completely appropriate to honor those who fought and died in the name of our nation without bullshitting us by saying that they were “fighting for our freedoms.” If anything, that cheapens their legacy, because it paints a paper thin GI Joe veneer over a much more complicated and difficult situation.
Beyond this, why the hell do we need to sing the national anthem at sporting events in the first place? What a stupid and ridiculous tradition that is! We don’t sing the national anthem before music concerts or starting the workday or before the movie starts at the theater. The idolatry that passes as patriotism these days would have the founding fathers rolling so hard they’d power the entire country’s electric grid.
Speaking of violently spinning founders, let’s talk about the bullshit that is both sides of the police brutality argument. On one side, you have the SJWs and civil rights LARPers who think this is Birmingham in 1958. On the other side, you have law & order conservatives who think this is Mayberry in 1965. Both are laughably wrong, but there’s no adult in the room to tell them to stop being idiots.
Cops aren’t heroes, at least not all cops are heroes. Cops are not tyrants, at least not all cops are tyrants. I’m not a strict individualist. I believe that you can assign generalities to individuals of a group. However, I think that you have to pursue such generalizations very carefully. By and large, people apply generalities too strongly and too broadly. That is the case here, as well.
The BLM agitators are notorious for swinging and missing every. single. time. Trayvon Martin? *whiff* Michael Brown? *pbfffft* The few cases that were actually open and shut abuse cases were completely ignored by BLM. Why? Because their end goal isn’t ending police abuse. Their end goal is stirring up racial strife in order to elevate their political (and financial) clout.
Cops aren’t walking targets in urban areas. Despite what some would have you believe, most folks don’t get their rocks off by taking pot shots at pigs. Save for one major incident, and a handful of one-off incidents per year, most people who have an issue with cops simply try to run away. This aura painted by the right of embattled cops struggling to make it home to their wives and 2.5 kids is completely made up.
Questioning the motives of cops is very patriotic. Police are armed enforcers of the state. They do good things (like handling outlaws), but they’re also the single quickest path to authoritarianism. The rapid militarization of police over the past 2 decades, paired with lax due process protections and highly aggressive tactics has turned policing from an Andy Taylor/Barney Fife context to a wannabe soldier context. The conservatives are happy to play along, grouping “first responders” with veterans in the exalted ranks of “heroes” to be honored with the flag.
Before this gets too long, I’ll wrap it up with a few quick hits.
- If cops were heroes, they’d be held to a higher standard than the public. Instead, they’re held to a lower standard.
- Qualified immunity has been abused and distorted to cover a cop’s every action. If it were “right sized,” any escalation by the cop would fall outside of qualified immunity.
- The fact that BLM and other civil rights griefers are even treated as legitimate shows how absolutely fucked up our media is.
- If the NFL players wanted to kneel before the thing that destroyed the black community, they’d find the nearest Medicaid office and kneel there. Then they’d join Antifa in tearing down all the LBJ statues.
- Nothing about the treatment of urban blacks is going to change until their culture changes. Holding police accountable for their overreaches isn’t going to fix the “systematic” issues. Only a massive cultural shift will do that.
- The NFL and Goodell are utter dumbasses. They should’ve nipped this in the bud a year ago, but they were sympathetic with Kapernick, and now they’re getting their asses bit for it.
- Notice I haven’t even mentioned Trump’s or Pence’s reaction. That’s because they have nothing substantive to add to the conversation. They’re charlatans playing the controversy for political points.