On Being an American
By Randy Gage in Critical Thinking, Prosperity.
Colin Kaepernick’s national anthem protest has started a much-needed discussion in America. Unfortunately the discussions haven’t always been positive, enlightening, or even very American.
Kaepernick has been ridiculed, called despicable names, and had his motivation questioned. There are public figures seeking to shame him. There are those who suggest that he doesn’t support our Armed Forces, doesn’t know what oppression is, or is somehow un-American. (Or not “black.”)
We have become a very mean-spirited, attack-prone, critical society. The fear mongering, marginalizing and hate speech is reaching epidemic levels.
Just yesterday I saw an interview with Tony La Russa where he questioned Kaepernick’s motivation and said he would never allow a player in his organization to protest this way.
Forgive me if I feel this reeks of the Jim Crow era. We have a powerful white guy upset with an uppity Negro for how he chooses to protest. (And suggesting that he knows what motivates his actions.) Sorry, that doesn’t work in America any longer.
The issues Kaepernick raises are very, very real. If you don’t think so, you’re living in a segregated bubble. I used to ask Dennis who worked in my shipping department, to have my cars serviced when I was on the road. After a few months, he asked me if I could get someone else to handle the job. I asked why…
He explained that is was very stressful for him, because he kept getting pulled over. Evidently the Miami-Dade area police think a black man driving exotic cars is suspicious and grounds for investigation. And any rational person not in denial knows that profiling and judgment situations like this (and incidents far worse) happen to people of color every day.
America is not perfect. No country is. What makes America great is our right to free speech, peaceful protest and the opportunity to create progress. If you really believe that America stands for liberty and justice for all, you have to recognize and respect everyone’s right for peaceful protest.
You don’t get to choose how another person protests.
There were people telling Gandhi his methods were wrong. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was ostracized for his methods on non-violent protest. People like Rosa Parks were initially marginalized, even demonized.
I stand and even tear up every time I hear the National Anthem. But that anthem represents America. And America represents the right of free speech and peaceful protest. Even when we don’t like it or agree with it.
So Colin Kaepernick, I salute you. And thank you for raising both the issue and awareness.
I am afraid that protest = unamerican. There is no anti-police or anti America in protest. Not one of the posters are willing to admit that people of color are targeted because they can't relate or refuse to see it. There is no law of attraction at work here folks. I get nervous when the police drive behind me and I'm 63. It called conditioning and history. Not your history, not your problem. God bless America and no one else, right. Thank you Randy for being brave enough to shine some light on this darkness.
People-of-greatness, Randy is standing on the "principles of Prosperity". Pointing out an example of why NORTH America, Canada included, is dominated by lack, with only "pockets of Prosperity" here and there. Colin is standing on his rights, like it or not.
The prosperity movement asks you to stand up for justice where you believe there is an injustice. That's what Colin is doing.
I do NOT salute Coliin Kaepernick. His heart may be in the right place, but his method of protest could not be more wrong and that is why he is feeling such backlash. Yes he is allowed by our Constitution to disrespect something that is revered by millions of Americans. What you are forgetting RG, is that those millions of Americans also have the right to voice their opinion about his protest and they have. Oppression and race problems are very real, but Colin has not added anything new to the conversation and he is not going to solve anything with his poorly chosen method of protest. I am not an expert on what should be done, but ticking off millions of people does not seem to be working. What changes has he helped make? And most of the articles I read about this, don't discuss "change" at all - they simply talk about the controversy of his method. Tired of seeing Colin in the news, but I do appreciate the people that do things that really affect change in this country. D.E.
What happened to the concept that you create your reality?If a person believes he/she will be pulled over while driving black, then he/she shouldn’t be surprised when it occurs.Stop making people into victims…that’s the government’s job.
Thank You Randy!
This again is a great reminder for me to not post any political topics. I have made postings against asylum scammers here in Europe, but this posting of yours again reminds me to stay out of politics, thanks!
Yes by all means he has a right to protest. However why disrespect the flag thousands of Americans gave their life for the flag and our freedom I feel that was wrong.
@rt3603 If you no longer accept the meme that people gave their lives for the flag and our freedoms, you will not be offended. You were programmed to belief that sh*t, but it was all made up. You were born free, but you allow your so-called government to restrict your expression of it. Wake Up!!!
With all due respect, Mr. Gage, I must strongly disagree w/ this line in your post- "the issues Kaepernick raises are very, very real. If you don’t think so, you’re living in a segregated bubble." It seems to me that you are saying that anyone who disagrees w/ you on the first point (the issues) is then "living in a segregated bubble". You are making a blanket judgement on people you don't know, whose feelings/reasonings you are not aware of, and calling them "the problem" because they disagree with your views (or perhaps Kaepernick views) on the matter. You say that "Kaepernick has been ridiculed, called despicable names, and had his motivation questioned" because of his stance/views, yet, with that one line, you are doing much the same thing. You can't call for respect and be disrespectful yourself. I personally respect Kaepernick, despite disagreeing w/ some of his reasonings, because he's willing to stand for what he believes in, even, and especially when, it hurts to do so.
@Jean Sory, but I'm not following your logic. I'm not calling anyone names or questioning their motivation. I'm saying the issues Kaepernick is raising are real. And he has a right to peacefully protest to bring awareness to the issues, without being told how to do so. Or be attacked. - RG
Randy, America is not a country it is a continent; maybe you're talking about United States of America
@Olks North or South is a continent, not just the word America. The Americas refers to the continents...God bless America
@Olks Funny how one of the first things that Randy points out is that our society had become "a very mean-spirited, attack-prone, critical society." and the first thing that you do with this post is to point out a 'flaw' and that America is a continent. Thanks for making the case-in-point on this matter. If you don't have something positive to go with the negative, then don't say anything at all - didn't your mom ever teach you that?
@robnews Why not God bless us all?
Colin Kaepernick has every right to protest, and all Americans if they choose have a right to protest and ridicule Kaepernick. If you don't believe that Randy then it is you who is in the bubble. There are no "safe spaces" to protect one from others' speech in a free society. Freedom of speech is a 2 way street, not a 1 way
@Randy_Gage What principles...committing atrocities such as stealing land from the Indians and Mexico and raping and lynching black slaves and then saying you are a nation based Christian principles? Please!
@Tom I have no problem with people not agreeing with him. Or staging protests of their own. But to suggest they have the right to tell him or anyone else how to protest doesn't honor the principles American is founded on.