A Rich Black Quarterback Opposed Racism – Cue The Blabbering, Hate-Spewing Hypocritical Morons
Colin Kaepernick’s Income and Profession Have Absolutely No Bearing On His Free Speech… Or His Message
I have a question for any conservatives reading this article, and it’s not rhetorical… I actually want you to take a few moments to answer this for me. And don’t worry, we’re going to get to Colin Kaepernick shortly. But first, I sincerely want you to tell me how you might react if this hypothetical scenario took place:
A white athlete who earns $20 million per year announces after a game that he is refusing to pay taxes “until America becomes great again.” When asked by reporters for clarification, he states that he doesn’t feel he should have to pay taxes so long as Obama is president, and threatens to leave the United States until after the election, despite his currently-active sports season.
How do you react to that? Do you hurl insults at him for badmouthing the President, insisting he respect the office if not the man? Do you criticize him for refusing to pay taxes after the nation did so much to give him fame and fortune? Do you shout “don’t let the door hit you on your way out” and celebrate his departure?
No? Then shut the fuck up about Colin Kaepernick.
The Colin Kaepernick “scandal” — a professional athlete taking a stand against systemic racism by refusing to participate in our national anthem — has been greeted on social media by conservatives who argue that he needs to be more grateful that he lives in the United States. If you haven’t seen these comments yet and you want to, go post literally anything about Colin Kaepernick on Facebook right now, then wait ten minutes.
Their view is that Kaepernick earns a fortune as a pro athlete, so by refusing to take part in our national anthem, he’s insulting the very country that handed him the opportunities that made him into a millionaire; that the United States and our way of life opened the door for his wealth, and he should reciprocate that by showing respect for our nation during our anthem.
Ironically, that same argument has been used for many years now by progressives who believe taxes should be raised on the super-wealthy. Those millionaires and billionaires wouldn’t have that wealth if not for the opportunities afforded to them by the United States and the ways our country operates. But conservatives hate taxes, especially taxes that might be used to help yucky poor people, so when one of the well-to-do argue and protest, they’re heroes to the right.
RELATED: Colin Kaepernick Has A Point In National Anthem Stance, But He Should Never Surrender The Flag
So what really separates Colin Kaepernick from those whiny butthurt millionaires and billionaires?
Colin Kaepernick is a person of color, and he’s taking a stand for other people of color in a way that hurts no one. Wealthy tax-dodgers are often people not of color, fighting for a cause that barely impacts 1% of America, in a way that indirectly hurts a lot of people… not to mention the nation itself.
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I’m not a fan of generalizations, and I don’t believe every conservative is a racist, but yes, most racists are definitely conservative. Just look at the reactions received by Olympic gold medalist Gabby Douglas when she haphazardly and unintentionally failed to place her hand over her heart during the National Anthem in Rio.
Their kneejerk responses were to claim Gabby Douglas was a member of #BlackLivesMatter. That she was a “Muslim who hates America.” That she was intentionally refusing to place her hand over her heart as an act of protest. Literally none of that is true, or even remotely close to being true. But that’s the kind of shit racists convince themselves of without batting an eye. They see a person of color and immediately assume what they believe to be the worst.
Conservatives will never bring themselves to admit it, but Colin Kaepernick is protesting something that is actually wrong with America. Something that is negatively impacting countless lives in America every single day and, more tragically, taking lives. By sitting down, he’s taking a stand, and forcing America to think about something and talk about something that makes them so uncomfortable they’d rather just pretend it wasn’t an issue at all.
What makes all of this hurt more is that if Donald Trump tossed out his arm in a Nazi salute during the National Anthem, or flipped off a disabled person, or interrupted the proceedings to shout at a mother for her baby being too loud, these same conservatives bitching about Colin Kaepernick would flock to support him, and they certainly wouldn’t attack him for failing to put his hand over his heart. Why? Because he’s one of them, and more importantly, he’s white (well, orange, but I digress).
So the next time you angrily shit-post Colin Kaepernick’s salary, please try to keep a few key points in mind. No, his wealth doesn’t negate his right to have an opinion, nor does it in any way affect his right to express that opinion in any perfectly legal and non-harmful manner he so chooses. You aren’t allowed to suddenly give a shit about the opportunities this country affords to some citizens while angrily, vehemently arguing against that fact in other discussions. And if Tim Tebow did this same exact thing in an effort to protest Obama’s treatment of white Christians — a problem that doesn’t even fucking exist — you would raise him up over your shoulders like he was Jimmy Chitwood throwing the final shot in Hoosiers. And hey, Jimmy Chitwood was a white kid, so you wouldn’t even feel the need to wash your hands afterwards. Way to go, racists!
(Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
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Matt Terzi is a political satirist and essayist from Binghamton, New York, who has written for some of the most prominent satire publications in the country. He’s now moving into more “serious” subject matter, without losing touch with his comedic roots