Friday, June 8, 2018

Sports Protesters, You're Making Yourselves Look Foolish.

Dear Sports Protestors,
   This letter is written first of all because you are acting like a bunch of ignorant jocks. You are not accomplishing anything positive by foolish actions such as boycotting invitations to the White House, plus disrespecting the National Anthem or the American flag.  I don't care if you don't like President Trump. I don't much care for him either.  However, the actions you are contemplating are not about a single person, they are about the whole of the United States of America.  You will not win anything by taking on the entire United States of America.  
    Donald Trump did not create the National Anthem.  There was a National Anthem before he was born and it will continue well after he is gone.  Donald Trump is not the American flag.  He is not even the White House  He is only the current occupant, and there will be others when he leaves. This whole business of deciding whether we are Democrat or Republican before we honor (or not) the National Anthem based on who is in the Oval Office is repulsively ignorant.  
     I served the United States of America as an Air Force officer under a Democrat (Jimmy Carter) and two Republicans (Ronald Reagan and George H. Bush).  I did not ask my superior officer to state their political party before deciding to salute him or her.  I was taught to salute out of respect for the country I chose to serve, not as an endorsement of the officer's political beliefs or persuasion.  It is respect for a COUNTRY not an INDIVIDUAL.  They are not the same thing.
     You seem to have forgotten that the United States of America, it's Constitution and its flag transcend the people who are working for it at any particular moment. That's the whole point.  It's the NATIONAL anthem not the TRUMP anthem or the OBAMA anthem. The WHITE HOUSE belongs to the AMERICAN PEOPLE, not to the President.  Maybe if you had studied harder in school you would understand the underlying philosophy behind our government. 
        Look it's a free country.  If you want to burn our flag and cuss us out, that's fine and I support your right to do it and in fact I was ready to lay my life on the line to make sure you would be free from federal prosecution. That's what freedom means.  It means the Federal Government will not seek to apply legal punishment for your actions.  It does not mean that everyone has to like you, or continue to pay your salary, or that people won't call you ignorant.  In fact, I just did.
     Truth to tell, President Trump has faked you out like LeBron James fakes out a rookie guard.  You are not disrespecting the President by boycotting the White House, the National Anthem or the flag.  You are disrespecting US, all of America that owns these national institutions. Moreover, this particular President actually likes it if you help him to promote the idea that the flag and to the National Anthem are part of his brand identity.  Your unhappiness doesn't bother him one little bit.  Really, you accomplish the opposite of what you intend.  What you are doing is the best possible thing for the President's popularity.  You are making it the Trump Anthem, the Trump Flag and the Trump House.  Stop it.  
      Look, when Osama Bin Ladin blew up the World Trade Center, it was not a Republican building that he blew up.  It was OURS. The affiliation of the sitting President doesn't matter. Ever so much more so, it's the AMERICAN flag, not the REPUBLICAN flag or the DEMOCRATIC flag.  We don't salute it in a Democratic administration and burn it during a Republican one.  It's US, not just half of us, and certainly not one person.  So if you decide you want to protest one person or a group of peole by disrespecting the flag--by disrepecting the entire country--people will be upset with you even if they support the cause you seek to draw attention to.  It's not just your intentions, it's the way that you are choosing to advocate your cause.  Anyway I'm not sure I even know what your cause is, other than you like being on TV.   
    Years ago, Muhammad Ali used to regularly fight lousy fighters, which served to keep him in shape and to look good. They called those untalented fighters the "Bum of the Month" club.  Well, that's what the misfiring protester-athletes are.  You are the "Bum of the Month" making the President look good by beating your brains out.  You don't know what you're doing, and mainly you are making yourselves look foolish and you're giving more power to President Trump. 

The President DOES NOT CARE if professional athletes wish to boycott, take a knee during the National Anthem or some other action. This is a fight he can easily win, and the sports figures look foolish, and President Trump becomes more powerful. 


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