“Go back to Africa!”
This is what I heard as a kid when black folks dared to question their (mis)treatment in the country we call “The Land of the Free”. In recent years, these words have been updated, often so obscured you had to dissect them to understand the true meaning. But today, President Donald Trump went old school on us.
President Trump feels those who choose to protest their (mis)treatment at the hands of state should leave the country. Yep! The descendants of those who unwillingly donated their labor to help build this place should leave because they choose to peacefully — and silently! — protest their unhappiness with the status quo.
That’s richer than Trump claims to be.
He also means the non-black brothers and sisters who’ve chosen to protest, right? In a league that is mostly made up of darker folks, we understand of whom he’s speaking.
When will this man understand that he’s no longer an Internet troll? He’s President of the United States.
Of course, he believes “you’re very fine people” if you’re a neo-nazi or a member of the Ku Klux Klan or a white supremacist or Alt-Right or whatever name is fashionable today. Do we need to have a noose around our necks (again) to understand where this man’s priorities sit?
The protests were born when former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick quietly began to sit during the national anthem. When his actions were noticed, it drew criticism. Then, Nate Boyer — a former Green Beret and NFL player — convinced Kaepernick to kneel instead. That didn’t help. The attacks on Kaepernick intensified, especially after it spread to other NFL players. President Trump seized on the opportunity and weighed in. Remember?
By the way, does Kaepernick have a job yet? No team will touch this player who led the 49ers to the Super Bowl.
Don’t hold your breath. The NFL just implemented a new rule. All on-field players and personnel are required to stand for the National Anthem. Teams will be fined for any violation.
Like a pig rolling in slop, President Trump loves the ruling!
President Trump and others hijacked the purpose of the NFL protests by making it about disrespecting the flag and those who serve our country in uniform. That makes so sense at all. Many from the African-American community have served in uniform, even if they’re not completely accepted as full members of this society. In fact, it’s of historical record that the first to die in the struggle for America’s independence was a black man. Crispus Attucks, for those of you who need a reminder. That was on March 5, 1770, at the famed Boston Massacre.
Over 248 years and we’re still in the struggle for freedom. Well, not all of us.
President Trump has never served in uniform, so he doesn’t have a clue what a sacrifice it is. That’s not to say those of us who have served are a monolithic group with single thought and belief. We’re not. We’re just as diverse as this country. Perhaps more. Non-white members of this society are heavily represented in our armed forces.
If we require everyone to stand for the flag and the national anthem, then this country needs to stand for the ideals we profess to believe in. I think 248 years is long enough of a wait, don’t you?
In case you need a visual reminder of why the protests exist, here you go…