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Progressive Politics in Minnesota, the Nation, and the World

The Essence Of Kaepernick's Take A Knee

Category: GOP House Republicans
Posted: 09/24/17 12:52

by Dave Mindeman

The current controversy which Trump decided to elevate is the Colin Kaepernick "take the knee" protest during the national anthem.

The conservative mantra has become that these "rich, spoiled athletes" are disrespecting the country that has given them so much. That this, somehow, should be condemned.

Well, first of all - this is free speech. And it is appropriate free speech in that the protest is silent, non-violent and individual. This is the type of speech that promotes discussion without raging rhetoric. We should applaud this, rather than condemn it.

What makes people uncomfortable is that it has struck a chord with the minority community. They empathize with this - they understand what Kaepernick is trying to convey. The real problem here is the uneducated reaction of the critics - the overwhelmingly white critics. Rather than pause for reflection, they go for disdain and dismissal.

Fortunately, the wealthy owners in the NFL (most of them) understand the players point. They have dealt with them contractually and personally and actually get the idea that this is proper free speech protest.

Today the NFL will play their games with all of this in context. Pre-game shows are only casually mentioning it - trying very hard to keep entertainment at the forefront without controversy. I think that is a missed opportunity, but it was expected.

At some point, we have to hope that this country finds a real dialogue about how minority populations are treated in this country - exacerbated by a President who does not care.

Until we get there, these quiet protests are welcomed and encouraged.
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