Why you’re wrong if you’re angryat Colin Kaepernick.
8/31/2016 by Dylan James Harper
An athlete of color took a political stance. With that, comes the backlash; with the backlash, comes articles, and with articles come comments. Here are the top ten terrible comments, and why they’re wrong.
1. How is he oppressed? He's making millions of dollars to play a game!
Kap stated: I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country thatoppresses Black people and people of color. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder (1).
He's clearly discussing systemic violence against communities of color, especially the black community. He's not talking about himself at all, although if there was any doubt he faces racism just check the comments section of any article on this topic.
2. Maybe he'd be better if he'd worry about sports rather than social issues.
Ah yes, because no truly great athletes would ever use their platform to discusspolitical and social issues; not the reigning NBA MVP (2), not one of the greatest all time boxers and athletes (3), not the best NBA player of a generation and future hall of famer (4), not several members of an NFL team (5), not the best tennis player of the millennium (6), and certainly not a huge portion of an entire league (7). Yes, truly it’s only athletes riding the bench that leverage their athletic ability to support a social movement or political cause.
3. The flag and anthem represent freedom!
It’s funny how that freedom is pretty conditional on what one believes politically. Regardless, the flag and anthem have always represented the country, not just one fabled aspect of what that country claims to represent. This is hardly the first time the anthem has been used for political protest (8).
4. Isn’t he half white?
This is truly baffling. Being half white hasn’t prevented Kap, or Derek Jeter, orPresident Barack Obama for that matter, from being called racial slurs, so it’s unclear why it should stop them from discussing racism. That’s kind of a moot point however consider that, once again, HE IS TALKING ABOUT PEOPLE WHO HAVE EXPERIENCED VIOLENCE AT THE HANDS OF THE
POLICE, NOT HIMSELF.
5. He’s just doing this for attention!
Is he? Is he really? Was LeBron, probably the most well known athlete in the world, doing it for attention? Was Ali doing it for attention when he WENT TOJAIL over his political and religious beliefs? What does he gain from this, other than get called racial slurs in comments sections?
6. He’s going to/should lose his endorsement deals and/or get cut!
Wait, is he doing it for attention, or is he going to lose potentially millions of dollars and his job? The implication of saying he’s doing it for “attention” is thathe doesn’t really believe in it, but if he’s potentially risking his job and endorsement deals, it seems like he must really believe in it.
7. What’s his solution? Protesting does nothing.
One could argue that the response alone is proof that it does something, but either way, if there’s a new rule that no one can talk about a problem unless they have the definitive solution, that would empty out a lot of comments sections.
8. There’s a time and place for politics/football is supposed to be a break from politics.
This is the mating call of someone not impacted by an issue. In reality, there is no such thing as silence of neutrality, and some of the most prominent civil rights leaders in history have made that very clear (9). Complacency can have dire consequences, as history has clearly demonstrated (10).
9. It’s disrespectful to veterans!
People love to leverage the political weight of veterans in these types of situations. The validity of this obvious appeal to authority goes right out the window if one thinks for three seconds and remembers that not only was no material harm done to veteran, but also that veterans are not a monolithic hivemind with a singular goal and expectations. There are probably some veterans somewhere offended by this, some that are supportive of it, and likely many that don’t care. There are, however, veterans groups that have worked with Black Lives Matter in cases of police violence against black veterans (11).
10. Why is he upset at the country that ended slavery?
Yeah, this is a real comment. Go scroll down under the first article linked. It’s tough to know where to start with something like this, but the obvious is that the United States is ALSO THE COUNTRY THAT HAD LEGAL SLAVERY. Slavery was so ingrained that the entire country almost split up, and had to fight a war, just to end it. The constitution of the United States states that slaves, black individuals, counted as three fifths of a human (12). It’s unclear what the person who made this comment was thinking, but they couldn’t have used a worse example to defend the principle of always supporting one’s country.
Dylan James Harper is the Chief Political Editor at CSuiteMusic