July 7, 2017 by aarong3eason
(Rejected by The Federalist, no reason was given but I think part of it is that this isn’t really a news item and I felt like what I was saying was original but maybe some of my points have been said elsewhere better, also I think it probably required some more editing and that probably made it not worth it)
As a diehard Boston Bruins fan I proudly display Tim Thomas’ Conn Smythe Trophy Banner in my study because he chose not to visit Obama’s White House after winning the 2011 Stanley Cup. 6 years ago he released this statement as to why he would be absentee:
“I believe the Federal government has grown out of control, threatening the Rights, Liberties, and Property of the People. This is being done at the Executive, Legislative, and Judicial level. This is in direct opposition to the Constitution and the Founding Fathers vision for the Federal government…this was not about politics or party, as in my opinion both parties are responsible for the situation we are in as a country. This was about a choice I had to make as an INDIVIDUAL.”
That sort of clarity and conviction is a rarity from anyone in the American Public Sphere let alone the celebrity athlete sector. A sector I suppose Shannon Sharpe has decided to run for governor of by repeatedly spewing leftist victimization propaganda.
He’s still trying to make the case that Colin Kaepernick not being on an NFL team is a travesty. I guess it has nothing to do with the fact that Kaepernick is the one who actually opted out of his restructured contract vying instead for free agency. Or that his last 2 years have been injury riddled as well as statistically poor? No no, I think Sharpe has clearly cracked this Sophoclean riddle wide open. And what is this most profound answer that Shannon Rex has for the Sphinx? Ah of course!
The truth is Kap would be signed if anyone thought he could help them win. Football’s saving grace is that it is a pure meritocracy.
September 1970 the segregated Crimson Tide is destroyed by the integrated visiting Trojans 42-21.
By 1971 ‘Bama desegregated.
Football will always prioritize success. So when it comes down to the moral posturing that Sharpe wants to see and whether or not your team is going to win games, well yes GMs will rightly ignore that snowflakery everytime.
Kap’s politics are not worth his skill level. Giving tweet service to #blm and related SJW nonsense is ubiquitous among athletes. But Kap has actually gone beyond that on several occasions and the repercussions appear on the field. For instance his defense of evil dictators like Fidel Castro.
Last year in Miami Kap led the 9ers to their first ever 10th consecutive loss. The Dolphins won that game by 7 points. A one score game is what NFL folks call close. And a close one on the road almost always means that the hometown crowd got involved. Ask anyone who has ever played at CenturyLink Field. Back in 2011 Seattle’s 12th man were responsible for generating the first playoff victory by a team with a losing record in NFL history. Kap knows this better than most because the Seahawks were his fiercest divisional rivals. So the week before playing a team on the road with a huge Cuban American fan base he decides to wear a shirt honoring the butcher they escaped from. The Miami Herald absolutely eviscerated him over this exposing just how deeply self righteous and ignorant he has become. Needless to say the Dolphin fans were pretty riled up.
If I were looking for a QB I would not want Kap based on that incident alone. There’s no telling what group he’ll offend next. If he could play like Aaron Rodgers I might not care, but he has never had that kind of talent. Everyone in the NFL is being paid to play. They don’t need anymore motivation to beat you. This is why Tom Landry did not want NFL films to invent the moniker “America’s Team” for my beloved Dallas Cowboys back in the late 70s. In 1981 Bill Walsh shifted the balance of power in the NFC from Dallas to San Francisco through the hands of Joe Montana and Dwight Clark during one of the most famous sports plays ever, known simply as The Catch. Joe Montana did not witness live what millions since have seen over and over. He was knocked onto his back. One of his teem mates said to him“you just beat America’s Team” to which Montana replied “well, you can sit at home with the rest of America and watch the Super Bowl.”
That stuff really matters. It seems tiny but it isn’t. This psychological aspect is present in all sports but its far more devastating in football. Each down can determine the course of an entire game, of a season, or even a career. Kaepernick’s intellectual and political immaturity are a liability. This is one of the many reasons the Patriots have been able to maintain consistent success for so long. Their players keep their mouths shut. Its all about winning, no politics, no drama, no distractions. Just football.
Kaepernick’s immediate future seems set. It doesn’t look like he’s going to be playing in the NFL anytime soon. But his latest controversial comment is actually far more egregious than comparing cops to the cast of Django Unchained or defending Castro.
On instagram he used Frederick Douglas to try to take a shot at Independence Day. He begins his post quoting Douglas’ powerful speech “The Meaning of the 4th of July for the Negro.” And if Kaepernick had read this speech instead of pulling the quote from a google search he would feel ashamed. Douglas speaks from the past clearly rebuking Kaepernick:
“Your high independence only reveals the immeasurable distance between us. The blessings in which you, this day, rejoice, are not enjoyed in common. The rich inheritance of justice, liberty, prosperity and independence, bequeathed by your fathers, is shared by you, not by me. The sunlight that brought light and healing to you, has brought stripes and death to me. This Fourth July is yours, not mine. You may rejoice, I must mourn.”
Frederick Douglas was a slave. And not just any slave but a chattel slave. He was legally owned as chattel for life. But he despised that shame and escaped. Not one single day of Kaepernick’s life has been spent in any sort of slavery let alone that variety. And the freedom that Kaepernick has expended no energy in procuring is because of July 4. Because the theological creed of natural rights that America based her revolution on was in fundamental conflict with the evil of chattel slavery which meant that it could never last. And quoting the beautiful words of Douglas only exposes Kaepernick as a hypocrite because his “high independence only reveals the immeasurable distance between” them. Douglas fought an evil. Kaepernick is fighting reality.
The last day of this school year I stood next to a special needs child that refused to stand and place his hand over his heart during the pledge of allegiance. I care for this student very much, which is easy to do when you spend an entire school year going through the good and the bad of a special needs classroom. So what happened next pains me deeply.
I asked him why he wasn’t standing. He looked at me with haughty eyes and said “I’m not saluting that flag.”
“Because America oppresses people.”
This is a 7th grader. A 7th grader who receives a free special needs education from the country he believes is built on oppression.
Can you guess his favorite sports team?
Good job Kaepernick. Now that kid and thousands like him will read your idiotic instagram and think that a great American Hero like Frederick Douglas believed all the same bullshit that you do.
Words are not violence and Kap is free to be an idiot. But there are always consequences for our ideas. Our freedom is priceless and fragile. You would think someone with ancestors who were treated as chattel would value their freedom by using it wisely instead of spreading victimization ideology to America’s youth.
Thankfully there are many who refuse to do this like former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice:
“I think we’re still a bright, shining city on the hill, not because we’re perfect but because we struggle in our imperfections every day. When I was standing in the Ben Franklin Room about to be sworn in as secretary of state — by the way by a Jewish woman justice, Justice Ginsburg — with Ben Franklin looking over us, I couldn’t help but think that this was a Constitution to which I was about to take an oath of allegiance that it once counted my ancestors three-fifths of a man, a Constitution that had to be referred to by Martin Luther King to say that America shouldn’t be something else, just had to be what it said it was. That’s a pretty powerful story of evolution. Human beings are not perfect. Their institutions are not perfect, but they have to keep trying. And America has to help people keep trying.”