I’d been inclined to skip this entire topic but the post by Peter Grant is well worth reading. A critical point from it:
I think there are a great many Americans who do understand the meaning of our flag and our national anthem. To see NFL players deliberately disrespecting that, putting identity politics over nation, is not just upsetting to us – it’s flat-out disgusting. If they do not respect the symbols of our nation, they should just get it over with and give up their citizenship. We don’t need them wasting our oxygen, consuming our resources and trashing what we hold dear. The nation is greater than the sum of its parts. That’s why our forefathers rebelled against Britain in the first place. That’s what they fought a bloody Civil War to maintain. The nation serves us to the extent that we serve the nation, and vice versa. No service – no nation. We give in order to receive – and I’m not talking about entitlement programs or handouts! It’s a two-way street.
What the protesting NFL players are doing is making it a one-way street. They’re demanding that we – that our country – give, whilst they give nothing back. They’re trampling on the symbols we hold dear because they think there are some things more important than our – note, our – nation. In trashing those symbols, they are also trashing those of us who hold them dear. It’s no wonder that the reactions to their protests have been so strong, and so negative.
For those inclined to make it about “but my freedom of speech!” – yeah. So? Bake that cake. I’m all for freedom of speech, but have a much lower sympathy for cries of it from people who demonstrate they are willing to ruin my livelihood if I exercise mine to say things they disagree with. In the meantime, I’m happy to let them don their signs.
Symbols matter. They may think they are just demonstrating their anger at an “epidemic” of white cops shooting black “kids”, but the manner of the demonstration shows that they don’t value the nation over themselves, and that they don’t care what we think of the nation as their fellow countrymen. Funny how we are supposed to care about what they want when they demonstrate so little care for what we hold sacred (As an aside, if Haidt is right liberals and leftist generally have a stunted grasp of holding things sacred, and Jordan Peterson’s first podcast goes into the importance of having things we hold sacred, and how that’s something we as a society are lacking these days). Those are not the actions of one who wants to extend an olive branch.
I’m not sure what’s worse, that they are knowingly offering insult and expecting us to bow instead of push back, tit for tat, or that they are so fucking ignorant of how deeply they have offended those who value the flag and the anthem.
Not all cops are good, but they’re also far from all bad. There are incidents that BLM could have rallied around that were clear-cut enough to have a case, but their tendency to rally around thugs being thugs, sometimes with black cops involved, while killing cops in clear-cut cases of murder renders their moral high ground so much quicksand. Their utter lack of concern for blacks killing each other in far greater numbers demonstrates their actual priorities, as well as ignoring other inconvenient facts documented in excruciating detail by people like Colin Flaherty of “White Girl Bleed a Lot.” Black arrest rates match the rates at which they are reported as perpetrators of crime, even by other blacks. Whites may be stopped less per capita, but are shot more often per stop.
Besides, any employer has a right to choose who they want working for them, and to fire them for being poor representatives on company time. Right?
So no, I’m not spun up about Trump’s comment. Sure, he’s got a bigger podium but he’s not threatening to arrest people, or “joking” about siccing the IRS on them. And if they players want to spit on our symbols and demonstrate that they value themselves and their pet causes more than the symbols of our nation that unify us, they are free to do so. I’d be careful of employing a civic nationalist argument in light of that, as that is certainly a demonstration that their alliances are now elsewhere, and they’ve declared themselves “not American”.
I’m going to enjoy popping the popcorn as the NFL’s ratings go in the crapper. Trump certainly has a talent or a fools own luck at dousing his enemies in gasoline whereupon they pull out a book of matches muttering “I’ll show him.”