Neo-America

Just so I’m clear, let me list the facts as I know them:

In protest against American racism, a Black football player kneels during the national anthem. That’s the length and breadth of his protest, correct?

He is then called out as “disrespectful” by another former Black football player, Jim Brown, who, if memory serves me correctly, once threw a woman out of a moving car.

We’ve somehow reasoned away a grassroots, fascist militia who open carries assault rifles and combat gear to their own protest, and a sheriff (Arpaio) who went after a judge, his own wife, jailed a journalist for reporting his misuse of power, was in contempt of the law for not showing up for his court date, and under who’s jurisdiction, the jail deaths in his lockups was an astounding 24 percent, with 39 of 157 inmates hanging themselves. And, by the way, what were their crimes?

In 2014, Felix Torrez was picked up for riding his bike to work on the wrong side of the street, taken to jail, and died from a bleeding ulcer while jailers ignored his cries. In 2011, Gulf War veteran Marty Atencio was manhandled and tasered by eight guards, (warning: graphic video at the link) then left to die. County residents have shelled out more than $140 million to pay for these criminal mishandlings. The journalist who was arrested by this sheriff was sent to jail because he wrote about this incident, as well as about other inmates who were hauled into one of Arpaio’s jails, then died for lack of attention —for example, a diabetes shot. His wrongful arrest cost Arpaio’s county 3.7 million in a settlement, and over 140 million for other false arrest and wrongful death suits. This is the sheriff who was pardoned by the president yesterday.

So, we’re praising a woman-beater for being a proud American, pardoning a sheriff who is simply a criminal wearing a badge, but we believe Kaepernick is “un-American?”

I guess, somehow, while I wasn’t looking, the definition of what it means to be “American” has changed drastically. I guess I and Kaepernick are really out of step with the new rules. Maybe we should change our name from the “United” States (which we are not) to Neo-America.

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