Colin Kaepernick and Civil Protest

By now most everyone has heard of the events surrounding Colin Kaepernick, quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers, and his refusal to stand during the national anthem played at football games. It began with him simply sitting on the bench and evolving him to take a knee during the anthem, almost as a gesture of respect. Nobody was surprised really at the outrage voiced by many Americans. Although, nobody actually questioned the reasons behind their outrage, because when it comes to our patriotism, their outrage is always taken as a given.

Shortly after, Kaepernick clarified his position:

I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color. To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.

Obviously this concept is not new, it derives from the greatly respectable idea of civil disobedience. Along with the negative reaction came the reinforcement from people supporting Kaepernick, including a slew of different athletes and other figures such as the #VeteransForKaepernick. For anyone interested, there’s a handy complete timeline of the Kaepernick protests outlining everyone who has protested in his example.

colin-kaepernick
Colin Kaepernick kneeling during the national anthem.

Many of the most common arguments against Kaepernick’s form of protest is that is disrespectful. We can take the example of New Orleans quarterback Drew Brees. In an interview Brees said that, while he agrees that Kaepernick has the right to protest, “there’s plenty of other ways that you can do that in a peaceful manner that doesn’t involve being disrespectful to the American flag.” Brees went on to say that the American flag “represents the very freedom that Colin Kaepernick gets the opportunity to exercise by speaking out his opinion in a peaceful manner about that issue.”

I could spend all day dissecting this very argument, but what core message really means is “Fall in line.” For anyone that doesn’t believe this just read more into what they are really saying. I could translate that entire statement above into this “You have the right to protest, but don’t change anything.” The argument commonly made about having the right to protest is enough evidence of how much freedom you have is bogus. We have the right as human beings to protest, but we have the privilege  to protest as granted by the state, in this case represented by the American flag.

It is for this exact reason that I don’t accept President Obama’s support for Colin Kaepernick. Because while Obama did support the right to protest, he just recently added :

I want Mr. Kaepernick and others who are on a knee to listen to the pain that that may cause somebody who, for example, had a spouse or a child who was killed in combat and why it hurts them to see somebody not standing… I also want people to think about the pain he may be expressing about somebody who’s lost a loved one that they think was unfairly shot. One of thing I saw about American democracy is that it can be frustrating, but it’s the best system we’ve got.

Again, this can directly be translated into “You have the right to protest, but don’t change anything.”

With how quickly information moves these days many people reasonably suspected that this issue had already passed along, yet there are recent developments in the story worth discussing. First off being the fact that Kaepernick reportedly received death threats over the incident, and his remarks on the presidential candidates.

The death threats, just as Kaepernick acknowledged, proved his point. When your nationalistic pride is so intense that you cannot tolerate dissent you’ve lost your true sense of humanity. Many people will argue “He’s being insensitive to people who’ve lost loved ones in the armed forces.” But I would argue that those people don’t understand the point of all this. What good is defending a country if that country is intolerable? And if that’s not the reason to send death threats, is there any true reason besides blatant dogmatism?

As for his comments on the first presidential debate, I still don’t see why people get upset over these things. The statement was “Both are proven liars and it almost seems like they’re trying to debate who’s less racist.” And again, people don’t like dissent. It’s not that he’s simply disapproving of one candidate, it’s that he’s against both. To a degree the public can accept if people endorse the opposite candidate, but going with neither must seem truly anti-American to them. The first headline regarding this issue read “Colin Kaepernick in danger of losing support after comments on presidential candidates” and it truly is a shame.

The true point of all this being the power of civil disobedience. Such a simple demonstration of disobeying caused such a simultaneous uproar and yet many people follow in his example. With the current sharp rise of nationalism it’s useful to remember the basic methods of protest and analyze them so that they may be rendered most effective.

 

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26 thoughts on “Colin Kaepernick and Civil Protest

  1. Sorry I can’t agree – this is stimulated by course win at any cost politics – I integrated a youth football team in the 60’s in the south when it WAS hell. This political opportunism that will be put back in the sack when the election is over. Is there still racism in this YES on both sides. Team athletics which is the best example of the RACES working together IN HARMONY is a dubious place to protest.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sorry, SandySays1, I can’t agree – you wrote ” is a dubious place to protest.” No place to protest racism or any other form of repression is “a dubious place to protest”! Not only are you against free speech but you are against doing it wherever the protester wants to protest!

      Liked by 3 people

  2. The only real problem with Kaepernick’s form of protest is that it involves a de-facto religious symbol—i.e., the American flag. Although some religious folk like to claim that America is a ‘Christian nation’, patriotism is America’s true religion. Patriotism’s doctrine is American exceptionalism; its symbols are the flag and the national anthem; and the US military is its equivalent of Christian soldiers. Consequently, the objections to his protest—whether of the ‘I support his right to protest, but not his method’ variety, or of the ‘if you don’t like it, then leave’ variety—are rooted in this kind of religious fervor.

    For all intents and purposes, the people making those objections are calling him a heretic. In the process, they are effectively labelling one of the most recognizable forms of respect—kneeling—as disrespectful. Never mind that many folks will get down on one knee to pray, or that getting down on one knee often accompanies a marriage proposal; because the American flag is involved, anything less than absolute conformity is required. Unless, of course, it’s on a living-room TV, in which case the salute to the flag via the national anthem becomes one last chance to use the bathroom or get snacks before the game begins…

    Liked by 3 people

    • I agree. I think Kaepernick doesn’t go far enough. We should be rejecting any flag, period, as just another attempt to alienate us from our selves while placing a symbol of the establishment in front of us. And that this occurs at a football game, a publicly viewed circus, is just plain Romanism.

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  3. I don’t have a problem with Kaepernick. I do have a problem with your analysis, and particularly your comment about Obama’s statement.

    (1) Mark Twain wrote: “Loyalty to country ALWAYS. Loyalty to government, when it deserves it.” What Kaepernick and almost everyone else does is confuse the idea of country with people who are temporarily in charge. They aren’t the same thing. However, this has become a very common mistake.

    (2) Theodore Roosevelt wrote: “I am an American; free born and free bred, where I acknowledge no man as my superior, except for his own worth, or as my inferior, except for his own demerit.” That is a simple indictment of prejudice in any form and condemnation of the current GOP agenda.

    About Obama’s comment: Nothing new here. The simple statement is that democracy is imperfect but no one has come up with a better form of government, and that is arguably true. However, democracy does evolve. The statement doesn’t say there is no need for change, because our democracy has always changed.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I thought your article was right on. The intolerance in this country is horrible to watch.

    “The death threats, just as Kaepernick acknowledged, proved his point. When your nationalistic pride is so intense that you cannot tolerate dissent you’ve lost your true sense of humanity.” I agree with him.

    Death threats. They are becoming common now when a person goes against the majority. I just read today about an elderly couple who got death threats over not allowing gay couples to marry in their chapel. They lost friends, family members and sold their house and chapel to get away from haters.

    Now, I don’t agree with them about what they did; I think it is wonderful when gay people want to get married. But I also think the old couple should have the right to marry whoever they want to and say no to anyone they want to. Yes, I guess it would hurt people’s feelings, but hey, it isn’t the end of the world! My church won’t marry a Christian to a non-Christian. Would I sue them? No. I think they have a right to decide who they will marry in their church. I would love to see a country and a world where we can all disagree yet still love one another.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. The day Obama made this statement I did a tweet on this same subject. I was appalled by Obama’s remarks and support Kaepernick’s right to protest without being “scolded” about it by the president of the U.S. Obama did a great disservice to our country with this comment!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Interesting you posted on this because I also used this same subject on two of my own blog posts. Here’s a clip on my post about Kaepernick.
    ————————————————————————-
    “Ok.. I can get quietly pissed at seeing some clown (yes… an opportunistic clown because he wasn’t thinking about his cause.. just himself) perform a defiant gesture during the Anthem and blow it off. But his reason really got me thinking on a couple levels given there’s actually support for this guy.

    1. Generally speaking we stand for the National Anthem out of a common respect for the principles of freedom we have fought to maintain, recognizing those who have defended those principles with their lives, and establishing our flag as the banner that represents our nation and those principles. It seems using the theater of the Anthem being played as your own personal public presentation of your own political agenda is just self-serving opportunism at the expense of using shock value to try and win supporters.

    2. His reason statement (his so-called clarified position) doesn’t make sense. His problem is with police violence yet he says he “…has no pride for a country that oppresses black people.”. Huh? I don’t recall me or any of my white brethren oppressing any blacks. I certainly don’t recall anything in the Constitution mandating the country to oppress black people. Last I recall, we have a black president, and I don’t seem to recall him oppressing any black people. Here’s something else… if Mr. Kaepernick has gotten stopped by profiling racist cops in his life and wants to use that as some grand struggle for civil rights, I think he needs to go back to school. He’s had far more opportunities in the way our country has evolved since Dr. King and company fought the good fight back in the 60’s. I am sure he’s not suffered any true oppression in his pursuit of football. There is police violence and racist people in the world and no question that needs to be fixed but the problems are far more complex than just saying the whole country is oppressive. Grow up, Kaepernick. Frankly, an old phrase from the 60’s pops into my head when I read your reason for sitting… America, love it or leave it. If you are so oppressed in this country to the point that you can’t respect the icons that stand for our basic ideals and freedoms, then jeez, pal.. find someplace you DO like because life is too short to be suffering in those chains you want to wear.

    Now… it would seem to me a better use of your time in pro football is to use your popular station as a member of a pro team to start some group, organization, whatever, that actually attempts to address at least one of the many problems of police violence and disadvantaged black youths in poor neighborhoods of color. Heck, strive to be the best player you can so you get more press and more interviews, and use that as your podium. You will have a better chance of being respected and admired rather than fade away as just another pissed off ball player, making millions in your lifetime and not relating to anyone struggling in the real world.

    In the end all you did was alienate the audience you wanted to inform and win to your side.”
    ——————————————————————————————-
    If you want to read my entire post and the similar post about Olympic defiance check these links…

    https://dougsboomerrants.wordpress.com/2016/09/01/kaepernick-and-we-wonder-why-the-extreme-right-is-so-wound-up/

    https://dougsboomerrants.wordpress.com/2016/08/21/maybe-there-should-be-an-olympic-event-for-doing-dumb-stunts/

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      • I think you have me confused with Trump. My direction was not to impose MY will but to suggest to Kaepernick that if he wanted to make an impression and gain allies to his cause that he might be more successful in doing it in more constructive ways rather than pissing off the people he needs for support.
        But on another issue… the reason there’s so much blow back on what he did is exactly because of the general public acceptance in what the anthem stands for. I am very sure there are members of the American public out there who respect the national anthem in their own “taxpayer” way… or not at all. Just because we have freedom of speech does not mean it would be smart to just say or do anything off the top of your head in front of any audience. Common sense should prevail… because you can’t assume unilaterally that every taxpayer interprets the Bill of Rights the way you might want to… unless of course you don’t mind a busted nose.

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        • Getting a “busted nose” would be the result of an assault. Is your point people shouldn’t follow their convictions lest another citizen commit a crime against them? Ridiculous.

          The point is people are free to do as they please. That’s the nature of life in free societies. We aren’t obliged to conform to what anyone else feels is appropriate. We can eat bacon even if Jews and Muslims don’t. We can be gay and even get married, even if Evangelicals can’t deal with it. This sense of proprietorship you (and many others) seem to feel over society is spectacularly arrogant. The idea Kaepernick or any other citizen should set aside their own judgement to adopt yours instead is absurd. You have not lived their life.

          Liked by 1 person

          • I suppose there’s a measure of fighting for conviction when trying to articulate one’s feelings toward someone else seemingly trying to use the national anthem as an exhibition for their own politics. But either way, it’s free speech to be sure. My point in my reply is that one’s level of conviction can be measured by what could happen as they express themselves. Sometimes conviction means a bit of a sacrifice. Believing in free speech is a conviction; allowing free expression when it is not popular is the sacrifice. Knowing the difference between the two and anticipating what a sacrifice could be to hold on to your conviction is part of the ongoing price we pay for our convictions… our freedoms. If the issue of your conviction is worth a bust in the nose then so be it. You either failed to understand the possible ramifications of how you are expressing your conviction, or you want to set yourself up as a martyr.

            My original post in here regarding Kaepernick’s stunt was that he could have done much more to achieve a greater good than just alienating his base of possible supporters. That’s simple marketing strategy for the long term… not martyrdom for a moment. Ask yourself this question… what exactly did he win for his cause that went beyond what he did?

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  7. Such a pleasure to read an intelligent analysis of an emotive incident! I think your analysis of civil disobedience and the response to it in this case is spot on. As a non-American I’ve always been somewhat baffled by the American allegiance to the flag, and indeed to many Americans’ incredibly strong allegiance to their own country, but you’ve rightly, in my view, identified that that is not really what this is about – its about intolerance to a peaceful form of protest. Everyone is entitled to their personal opinion, but as you say, it seems they are not entitled to protest on the basis of it.
    “When your nationalistic pride is so intense that you cannot tolerate dissent you’ve lost your true sense of humanity.” – ah! Perfectly expressed! Well done Sir!!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I find the greatest example of true liberty is the fact that in this country (United States), your freedom to protest is protected even to the extent of burning our nation’s flag.
    To me, that defines freedom and liberty for the citizens of our democracy.
    I always stand for the National Anthem, even at home in front of the TV, even if I am all alone.
    Many heroes have sacrificed much over the last two centuries to preserve these concepts of liberty, and it is for them and my appreciation of our country that I stand in awe-struck respect.

    I would lay my life down to protect this liberty for all Americans, all colors, all churches, all political parties, whether they stand for the Anthem, recite the Pledge of Allegiance, vote, or do none of these.

    Seek peace,

    Paz

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Read somewhere that before 2007, the players were in the locker rooms until AFTER the anthem. That was before the US military starting throwing $$$$$$$$ at the NFL in a publicity campaign. Aka bond drives featuring the group that raised the flag on Iwo Jima. War fatigue in the public had to be reversed. Why aren’t the cameras on the luxury boxes? What about those people in line for beer or the restrooms?
    Having served and read the Constitution. Both versions. The Bill of Rights was written by James Madison in response to calls from several states for greater constitutional protection for individual liberties. Funny how a statement of individual rights that protect the Minority has been used by the Majority has a club. The government better keep their hands off my guns and stay out of my castle. Except when going after the Bad Guys or in the bedroom of those Gays. Your free to be Christian but all the rest, not so much.
    Don’t make me think about this stuff. Shut up and play. Thin skinned wankers. I can be just has unreasonable has the other side.

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  10. Colin Kaepernick is a fool. Many individuals might speculate as to why he started his side show. Some believe that it was a way to keep the team from releasing him since he has no real prospects to play for another team due to his injuries. So a charge of racism is enough to make the 49ers to keep him on the roster another year. Yes, that would be a rather cynical view. But he was raised by a loving family who adopted him early in life so ne never grew up in the “Hood” and had to face all those problems. He has led a very privileged life. Does he really believe in the “Cause”? If kneeling during the anthem is his only contribution to the “Cause”, that doesn’t say much for him. Oh, he received death threats for his action, how wonderful. The loonies are always with us. What does that say about the woman who was in her front yard where she had placed a Trump sing and was not only beaten up by a gang of Latinos but the video was place in social media extolling their triump?

    Dear author, you have no history in this world. You are a young man and what have you done so far? Have you ever been impoverished or fought in any war? Did you ever march for desegregation and civil rights? Did you stand up in your church and question the spiritual leadership about the problems confronting the community? Have you been married and raised children? Have you been involved in children sports teams or other community activities? Do you quietly talk with other individuals about what you see as the future and its problems? Did you ever help anyone who needed the basics of help and understanding? Did you ever stop and change a flat tire for anyone who needed that help? did you ever take in on yourself to mow someone’s lawn because they couldn’t and then refuse payment when offered? You are a young man and lack the experience that comes with age. You make fine moral distinctions without understanding humanity. That is the common problem of youth. We all go through it and as we acquire experience and age we come to see the world a little differently as long as we have not acquired political belief as a religion.

    You misread the public sentiment. First it was Kaepernick then it became a host of others trading on the “symbolism”. If I want to watch a football game then that is what I want to watch. I don’t want my nose rubbed into someone else’s political bull pucky. If I attend a political rally or debate then I am not there to watch football or any other sport. And unless you haven’t noticed, the number of viewers watching football are declining. Gee, if the owners start benching players for their political shows of activism do you think the media will charged them with being racist? Fewer viewers mean loss of advertising revenue so I guess the viewers will be charged with being racist. But it’s the bottom line that matters. You see, freedom is a double edge sword. It’s comes with responsibility. When you first moved out on your own you were free to do as you pleased. You were also free to support yourself. That’s the way it was for my generation and I don’t believe life has changed that much.

    As has been noted above, this is a country. A country is defined by its land mass and by its population. We give our country a label, by the way. We give our country a symbol of that label, it’s called a flag. This differentiates us from the rest of the world. Our general culture defines us and allows further definition through sub cultures. This is a basic group process that extends down to the family level. And among all these groups individuals and groups can be as irrational as they wish but they are still the fabric of the country and its general culture. We get to pick and choose many of our group memberships, not all, but many. We also get to push out of our groups members who no longer have the same goals and values the rest of us have. Now sometimes the group membership is informal and the group is of an immense size. So we can see the turmoil that surrounds some of the members. This is what you are seeing with football in the NFL right now only you can’t really recognize it. You talk about democracy and rights, but that is political talk. Does your friendship group hold elections and vote on policy? Political institutions are a top down invention. If the people are lucky, they will subscribe to such rules and regulations and policies. If not, then all is forced upon them. But is all artificial to human behavior. We will go along with such institutions to get along. That is human life.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. It’s so important to keep talking about this, in my opinion. I feel very similarly about Michael Jordan’s words in response to things, as much respect as I still have for him.

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  12. You are very intelligent and well read, at least on some things. I think you make some very good points concerning justice and equality, but be careful in making quick judgments and conclusions without considering all sides of the story. I support your views, just not your methods. That will come in time. I do congratulate you for being willing to speak out for those who are ignored or persecuted, but you have to learn to add a little honey with your lemon, if you expect to convince anyone. President Obama has learned that lesson. It’s called BALANCE.

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  13. Reblogged this on Sign of the Times and commented:
    Frankly, I think Kaepernick, and others like him, don’t go far enough. We ought to question the very notion of “Pledging Allegiance” to a nation state, period. As for the idea, among some critics of Kaepernick’s, that not standing for the flag is disrespectful to military veterans, I think their analysis is symbol-minded, worn out programming kicking in, like white blood cells attacking a foreign host. Allegiance to a nation, and the military that voluntarily carries out the actions of that nation state, is just plain stupid. Pledge allegiance to yourself; pledge allegiance to your actual community, not some made up abstraction, called a country for purposes of tax harvesting.

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  14. The person who actually wrote that just because somebody didn’t grow up in the hood would not understand racism is an idiot. Bill Cosby son was killed for being black – no matter how much money you have your skin color doesn’t change. That’s why we’re not talking about classism, we are talking about racism.

    This is probably what I would have written if I had had a chance. I don’t see what the big deal is. People wear the American flag on the ass of their jeans. How is that not disrespectful? Oh, it’s patriotic? There is a very fine line between patriotic and nationalistic. Having lived in European nations and also Canada I can without a doubt say that the United States is nowhere near a free nation. I spent the Gulf War in Ireland and I saw what happened when Americans did not because George Bush censored all video. Until you live in another country where it is better you don’t really have any idea of how bad it is in the United States. Yes, there are many countries that are much worse, but there are a lot of countries that are a lot better.

    Also I don’t see anything in the Constitution that says that the flag is more important than free-speech. Also there isn’t anything written about even respecting the United States . Nothing. Thomas Jefferson said that there should be a revolution every 20 years. I think that the founding fathers would be quite baffled as to all of this nationalistic insanity. I’ve never risen for national anthem in my life anywhere I’ve ever been and nobody has ever bothered me because a lot of other people were sitting there to . Why doesn’t he have the same right? We don’t have to stand for the national anthem. The United States has actively done things that have harmed me that are illegal in other nations. Same with family members who were in the military.

    A flag may be a sacred object to you but it’s not to me. I will respect the sanctity of what someone believes is holy – I’m not going to stomp on a crucifix or burn a prayer rug, but that doesn’t mean I support all of the things that those symbols represent. What is sacred to me is devalued, killed and trampled. Like human dignity. Like safe food and water. Like the lives of people I know who are dead because of being murdered by police or lack of healthcare. The American flag is good for only one thing in my opinion – covering the corpses of the people who were tricked into fighting for multinational corporate interests under the guise of patriotism and that may not be the military of the past ( although colonialism was the basis of much of the military ) but it is the military today. When I see the flag what it stands for is another dead boy or the one in five of the servicewomen who are raped by a service man, the description of the land and water, people and food where drones drop their bombs and the giant coverups exposed by people like Edward Snowden.

    Until the United States represents the reality of work so many people are saying it does the flag represents the reality of the United States. And that reality is not something I would ever honor. Whatever it might have meant and whatever being American might have met once is no longer true and that symble whether people like it or not has been co-opted by reality. I could hang the flag of some imaginary land where there were all of these rights that I’m told we have in the United States and salute that but I’m not going to ignore reality.

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    • Well, here’s the thing.. if America is such a thorn in your side then either help to change it or go find another country in which to live. It’s obvious you are suffering for whatever reasons you’ve conjured up, and life is too short as it is (black or white) to suffer living someplace in which you are not happy. If nothing else it will be better for your health.

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      • Lol. I conjured a cop murdering friend. I must be very powerful. I conjured up my uncle having agent Orange poisoning the military denied for 40 years. I conjured up GMOs. I conjured up 1 in 3 and 1 in 5 men being raped. Thank you very much for your belief in my power. It is very encouraging. 🙂 And as far as have changing the country – I actually have changed laws. I have changed laws, taught homeless childkren at Headstart programs, worked statewide literacy programs for adults, currently run on my own with no money a literacy program for people in prison while being with a life-threatening illness and I am the only contact in Vermont for another medical illness. I actually volunteered at polling stations where I saw the law broken every single time. I was a journalist with 5 million readers. I have definitely changed the country. And the United States is not a thorn in my side. I’m saying there are better countries. Look at the test results for grades? How is the United States doing with education? Not well. Look at domestic violence? Why do we have 1% of our population in prison more than any other nation in the world? Are Americans all criminals? Not my experience. Look at how we have the highest rape numbers of any “Western industrial nation”. One in four girls before they are 18 will be sexually violated. Look at the amount of people killed by police. When I was in Toronto there were 27 shootings in the entire city in one year. And that freaked people out. Look at the 20% of women who joined the military to serve their nation and are raped. look at the literacy rate. Homelessness. Poverty. We are basically in the middle. Just because the United States is not the best nation to live in doesn’t mean it is horrible. If I gave up on it what I have served my my nation? Yes, I served my nation. So what have you done? What are you doing right now to make sure that this country lives up to its constitution? What are you doing to make sure that civil rights and disability rights are being maintained? What are you doing to make sure that the polling stations are honest? What are you doing make sure that we have an educated population who can compete in the international workforce? What are you doing so that women make as much money as men? What are you doing so that communities are not broken up with institutionalized racism with the prison system? What are you doing to prevent drug addiction? What are you doing to make sure that the water is safe to drink? What are you doing to make sure that the food is labeled so people know if they’re taking a chance? What are you doing to make sure that everybody has access to medical care? What are you doing so that there is freedom of religion? What are you doing so there is freedom of speech? What are you doing to make this nation worthy of the respect that you believe the national anthem deserves? What are you doing to make sure that all flags are considered equal? All cultures? What are you doing to undo 500 years of racial genocide? African-Americans only became full citizens in 1960. Things are not equal because we do not have equity. What are you doing about the average Native American man living to be only 46? What are you doing about the incredibly high rates of cancer around cell phone stations which are a big priority in Europe? What are you doing to help homeless veterans? What about the employment of veterans being less than half of that of other people? What about the massive problems with PTSD and also traumatic brain injuries? What are you doing to help them? Is standing to the flag more important than actually getting your hands dirty , making very little money, and making a difference? When you have change laws to help the people that the United States Constitution says it will help then maybe we could have a conversation. But your black-and-white thinking suggests borderline personality disorder and I would seek treatment. Also you’re paranoid psychosis about my superpowers of conjuring things up definitely does need a doctor visit. But thank you so much for the vote of confidence. Those of us who are actually doing something are grateful that those of you who do nothing but complain have such faith in us. When you decide to actually get involved, work your ass off, put your values ahead of money then maybe I will consider you for talking to. But right now I’m really busy trying to prevent crime. Since you are basically saying America love it or leave it you are saying ” support the status quo or get out.” That’s very different than saying ” lmake changes to make the nation better.” If I had a time machine I would Sandy ` seven where I think you would be a lot happier.

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        • Well, no, I wasn’t saying America, love it or leave it but rather suggesting that your list of American faults seem to be burdening you and you might be best served re-locating to one of those countries that you allege are better just for your own health and peace of mind. Even in your recent reply you’ve again gone into a litany of America’s shortcomings. By the way, I acknowledge your list, and more that didn’t make your list here. Especially mental health, which no candidate nor any politician is willing to tackle at this time.. and is a whole other issue than what we are discussing here. I could discuss and debate many of the items you brought forward here. But there is one thing you did mention that is important… what am I doing about it all. Excellent question. My answer… well, pretty much nothing that will change the world. Now, does that eliminate me from having opinion because my list of impassioned activist intervention isn’t as great as your’s? Humans all answer to the beat of our own individual drummer and we select those roles that fit our degree of personal desire… and ability to deliver. It’s too bad that I have failed to meet your criteria for spending time “talking” to because my hands are not as dirty as your’s in the battle for self-affirmation of public charitable accomplishment. But I am impressed that you also have the medical ability to recognize that I might have a personality disorder and some paranoid psychosis, even though your diagnosis reflects your obvious failure to have graduated with any sort of a degree in the field.

          By the way, I am a real military veteran. Feel like helping me in some way? I need a new car.

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