Protesting The Protester

Colin Kaepernick

Colin Kaepernick.  You’d have to have been in a coma the last week to not have heard his name.  Mr. Kaepernick is the NFL football player that decided he would protest “oppressed people” by sitting during the National Anthem.

Never minding what he considers ‘oppressed’, how he measures it, how he thinks his sitting during pre-game will be different than his sitting DURING game or how he thinks his protest will affect change – the pop-culture conversation has been all about Kaepernick and his decision to sit.  And for how long.

I’ve mostly stayed quiet on this one save for a few face-to-face personal conversations with friends and neighbors.  The usual eye-roll* is quickly followed with ‘pass the beer nuts’ and we move on.  It’s the same thing.  Cause de jour is being highlighted and is amplified by the media in an obvious method to stoke agita.  I mean serious; who could care less about what Colin Kaepernick thinks about anything?

So whatever.

But then I have seen the trending or viral Facebook post on the topic authored by Jim Wright:

If Americans want this man to respect America, then first they must respect him.

If America wants the world’s respect, it must be worthy of respect.

Much more at the link  – but this was the part that got me.   Now, to be fair – I doubt that Mr. Wright expected his post to go viral.  That being said, the moving back and forth between America and Americans is misleading and confusing.  There are concepts that are unique to each – to America the Nation and then to Americans the Citizens.

The First Amendment chief and first among them.  For example, you have no First Amendment Right in my home, nor me in yours.  Don’t like my speech or religion?  Force me to leave; you can.

But AMERICA can’t do the same.

So when Mr Wright laments Americans who want Mr. Kaepernick to respect America by first demanding they respect him – he’s off.  His thesis has no logical continuity.  America the Nation is not interchangeable with Americans.  I am under no moral, or other, obligation to show respect to Kaepernick.  And his respect, or disrespect thereof, America being predicated on such is ridiculous.

Here I do agree with Mr Wright:

The United States isn’t a person, it’s a vast construct, a framework of law and order and civilization designed to protect the weak from the ruthless and after more than two centuries of revision and refinement it exists to provide in equal measure for all of us the opportunity for life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

Yes.  More or less, the United States is that.  And if you don’t respect that, or feel that America is living UP to that, then sit.  Or stand.  Or clench a fist.  Or turn your back.  Or walk out.

Whatever you wanna do – do it.

And yes, THAT is what our veterans have fought and died for.  The right to protest your government for redress.  The privilege to offer speech, or not, free from lawful persecution.  The right to agree – or not.  To vote – or not.  To stand at attention, or burn, the flag that represents the very freedom you are exercising.

To protest free from tyranny.

But it DOESN’T mean that you get to protest in amnesty of MY right to protest.

So, if Mr. Kaepernick wants to sit his entitled ass on the bench where he will earn north of $100 million dollars while doing nothing to *change* the conditions he’s protesting, that’s his journey.  I haven’t seen anyone denying him that.  I haven’t seen calls for his arrest, or his detention, or his forceful demand to stand by threat of State sword or gun.  All I’ve seen is a massive and rather resounding protest of the protestor telling him that he’s a dumb ass.

America can’t tell Kaepernick to stand to, but Americans most certainly, and rightfully, can.

* This is in two parts:

  1.  What is it about people who demand change without active participation?
  2. Does Kaepernick comprehend that by relinquishing the change agent within his own self he is only buying into the power structure he claims to hate?

7 responses to “Protesting The Protester

  1. Yeah, the political stuff is boring. My issue is more direct: with Teddy out, might Colin be available. I’d say it’s Sanchez or Kaepernick as the best potential replacements that may be available (not sure if the 49ers would trade him). It does seem like “Veterans for Kaepernick” is getting a lot of positive press his way. But really, all that is noise, what matters is what happens during the game!

    • Yeah, the political stuff is boring.

      And counter productive.

      It does seem like “Veterans for Kaepernick” is getting a lot of positive press his way.

      I will say that choosing to sit for the Anthem is better form of protest than shutting down I35.

    • “Yeah, the political stuff is embarrassing for my side, so let’s ignore it.”

      Fixed that for you, no charge.

      I wonder if Kaepernick’s adoptive parents echoed King Lear’s plaint about a thankless child and a serpent’s tooth? Be careful about adoption, or all you’ll get is spite, disrespect, and betrayal of the things you value. Look what became of Kaepernick. What a horrible brat. Those poor parents of his. They and this country gave him everything: opportunity, wealth and fame beyond the dreams of ordinary men. Sure, no place is perfect, but is there a better place to be a man like him? And yet he spits on it for the stupidest reasons, while of course forsaking none of its benefits. No gratitude, appreciation, humility, or filial piety. I bet he doesn’t even pay the favor forward and save a child like him from the ‘oppressed’ ghetto. I know his parents tried to cultivate his character, tried to instill these virtues within him. But it didn’t take, because there was always going to be this social force pulling his spirit away. Nothing one can do about that; it is just the way things are. Kaepernick is what happens; beware.

  2. Well said Mr. Thales. Entitled spoiled little cry-baby, another entitled liberal who wants to get paid for doing nothing, and like so many other “Fair Share” Liberals has to get his sense of significance not from a job, but from a perception of victimhood trying to draw attention away from his incompetence.

    I’m sure liberals have a nice cozy little safe room complete with cookies and puppies awaiting him when he gets laughed out of the NFL – that or he can look forward to enjoying the CFL or Arena League. .

    • To be fair, playing football at the highest level isn’t “doing nothing”, but only by technology created by people far smarter and less handsomely paid than he, is he able to leverage that to absurd levels of wealth. That he is such a ingrate is testimony not only to his stupidity as a human, but the moral bankruptcy of the media and academia that push the Narrative.

      • Not to split hairs, but I don’t knock the fact that he’s made it to the level of NFL quarterback. What I knock that way are his “accomplishments” once he’s arrived there.

        “stupidity as a human”, “moral bankruptcy of the media and academia” – totally agree.

  3. Oh my — the Clevenger suspension revealed how hypocritical the sports industry is: free speech for black players, but not for white ones.

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