Sunday, September 24, 2017

Revolution IS the American Way

It's been so long since I've posted anything on the 'ole blog, I almost forgot I had one. I hope my thoughts on the current cultural/political powder keg in which we find ourselves falls on fertile soil.

"When one man of popularity stands up and tells the truth...he might lose a few dollars, but he's helping millions. But if I kept my mouth shut just because I'm making millions, this ain't doing nothing. I love the flesh and blood of my people more so than I do the money."

-Muhammad Ali

Donald Trump would have NFL and NBA players downplay racial injustices and ignore opportunities to voice their justifiable objections to them from the broad platform each of them has earned, and instead to sit idly by and be quiet--show their masters that they're grateful for the millions of dollars they are "given" to play sports. Step and shuffle, all the way to the White House to shake hands and smile for the photo op. According to him, taking a knee during the national anthem dishonors our country's heritage. Public protest is anti-American. Please note: his current tear started because one of those athletes didn't want to come visit him at the White House.

He's forgetting (or more likely skipped the days at school) where we were taught what our country is actually about--from Plymouth Rock to the Continental Congress, from the Trail of Tears to Standing Rock, from the Northwest Passage to Appomattox, from Pearl Harbor to D-Day, from Kristallnacht to Nuremburg, from Kent State to Occupy Wall Street, from Birmingham Jail to the Freedom Riders, there's never been anything MORE American than pointing out wrongs in an attempt to right them, win or lose. He's forgetting that how hard and how often our flag gets saluted doesn't mean anything, if "the Republic for which it stands" doesn't honor all the people who stand under it--equally.

I've been ashamed to call myself an American for the better part of a year, lest someone mistake me for aligning in any way with my country's current figurehead. This week, I remembered what being an American actually means. I'm relieved to be reminded that a much different precedent was set long before him and that his is not the only standard to which I have to aspire as an American.

I do not admire or support a man who's ideals ignore and marginalize his countrymen in favor of blind, national pride. Today, I kneel with the jocks.