We Put a Hand Over Our Heart, Nike Puts Thumb in Our Eye

Failed NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick continues to stay culturally relevant by depending on the kindness of strangers. If it weren’t for white folks, beginning with his foster parents, Kaepernick might just be another player who peaked early and disappeared.

The first white person who bailed him out was — of all people! — President Donald Trump. Colin began his ‘take a knee, look at me’ protest with an example of bad timing that should have rendered him a joke from the beginning. He protested black “injustice” during Barack Obama’s second term.

Rick McKee, The Augusta Chronicle, GA

Now I won’t deny there are still jerks who like nothing better than disparaging black folks while burning a cross in their backyard fire pit. Still, it’s a pretty ramshackle variety of “institutional racism and oppression” that lets a black guy slip through the net and become president.

Cognitive dissonance has never been a feature of the Opposition Media, so the contradictions of Kaepernick’s genuflection were ignored. Colin’s problem was the public was starting to ignore him.

Then Trump came to his rescue. The president’s flag protest tweets made him sole proprietor of the opposition to flag disrespect. Instantly, Kaepernick is relevant again.

Then comes the off season. David Hogg doesn’t play the national anthem at his anti–gun rallies, so no role for Kaepernick there. The same goes for the other America Last functions with which Colin is now allied. Trying playing the Star Spangled Banner at a Black Lives Matter rally and Kaepernick’s knee wouldn’t have time to hit the dais before the violence begins.

Colin needs football more than football needs him. His summer media mentions were boring updates regarding his lawsuit against the NFL for not being willing to pay millions to a self–absorbed customer alienator. Kaepernick was running the risk of sliding into the ‘Disgruntled Employee Sues Former Employer’ pigeonhole with Stormy Daniels.

Then the white folks at Nike came to the rescue.

Kaepernick is now the face of the ‘Just Do It’ campaign. Colin’s acceptance was a certainly. Nike’s making the offer is what’s curious. Decades of Nike marketing is based on an immature, high school rebellion philosophy.

Which means there’re plenty of other Americans who risked all to stand up for their beliefs, but I don’t think Nike will be featuring Masterpiece Cakeshop owner Jack Phillips or former Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis any time soon.

Nike prefers to put its corporate thumb in the eye of 63 percent of white America and 26 percent of black America that is opposed to insulting the flag. This could prove to be a bad financial bet, since I’m not sure how much money the Ultimate Frisbee demographic spends on sports equipment.

Insulting the flag is the short–term damage, but the decision has dangerous long–term implications. Nike has decided to put its corporate weight behind dividing the country in service of lies and propaganda that harm the black community it purports to be supporting. And the campaign has no terminus because It’s impossible to solve a problem that doesn’t exist.

Philippe Lemoine did an analysis of the Police–Public Contact Survey, a 70,000 sample of US residents. He found “just 16 unarmed black men, out of a population of more than 20 million, were killed by the police…These figures are likely close to the number of black men struck by lightning in a given year.”

The case for routine police harassment is equally fraudulent. Black men have less yearly contact with police than whites: 17.5 to 20.7 percent. And as for injury, protesters in the stadium have a greater chance of getting a rug burn at the hands of Monsanto than they do a bruise at the hands of the cops.

Patriots lit up social media with photos of burning Nike products. This seems self–defeating to me since it limits our wardrobe choices without damaging the corporation.

A better option is wealthy collegiate athletic donors informing athletic directors that if Nike isn’t dropped, then their donations to the program certainly will. This type of punishment may make a difference in the Beaverton boardroom. Individuals can save matches and stop buying future Nike products.

My son thinks it’s a big deal about a small affront because he likes Nike Rugby cleats. He’s wrong. The culture is in this situation today because people who love this country sat back in their comfortable chairs and let the insults accumulate.

It was only an ad, or a statement or a single policy. Time after time after time. The result of our indolence is mainstreaming Colin Kaepernick. It’s time to demonstrate that putting a thumb in the eye of middle America is not a cost–free exercise. If for no other reason than we’re running out of eyes.

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Millionaires & Billionaires Fighting “Oppression”

Oppression certainly isn’t what it used to be. Instead of vicious police dogs, water cannon, billy clubs and Bull Connor, America is greeted with the sight of millionaires and billionaires kneeling in football stadiums trying to make white America feel guilty without so much as a Chihuahua yapping in the background.

And they aren’t alone. The Opposition Media, celebrity culture, leftist pastors, educators, politicians, various groin activists and Hollywood were all united in condemning the USA for the alleged subjugation of blacks. The protesters had no compunction about attacking the president and insulting the flag.

If this is “oppression” it’s news to Stalin, Hitler, Saddam and Kim Jong–Un. If I were a white supremacist, I think I’d demand my money back. From all appearances it’s whites, conservatives of all colors and taxpayers who are being told to sit down and shut up.

Instead of being a lonely and dangerous stand against institutionalized brutality and “oppression” the “take a knee movement” has rapidly become this fall’s Ice Bucket Challenge. The difference being the Challenge was a showy, self–involved effort on behalf of a real disease, while take a knee is a showy, self–involved effort on behalf of a grievance fantasy.

The left claims to own science, so lets look at the data. First of all the Us is one of the least racist nations on the planet. An investing and investment newsletter, with the credibility–dissolving name of Insider Monkey, performed an analysis of racism polls that included “responses of over 85,000 people from 61 countries” and found the USA didn’t even make the top 25 of the most racist countries.

The number one for racism was India with South Korea at number 25. What researchers did find was the US ranked #12 on a list of the Least Racist Countries in the World. The report concluded, “We believe America, on average, is one of the most racially tolerant countries on Earth.”

So much for “oppression.” But no protest implying malevolence on the part of whites would be complete without including “police brutality.” Data here proves there may be individually brutal cops of all colors, but there is no institutionally brutal police regime threatening blacks or anyone else.

Philippe Lemoine did an analysis of the Police ­Public Contact Survey (PPCS). It’s a 70,000 sample of US residents 16 or older that’s representative of the whole population. Participants are asked if they had an encounter with the police during the past year. If so they are asked for details, including any use of force.

This means data from the survey is based on personal encounters with law enforcement and not speculation on encounters other people have had with cops based on OpMedia reports or “community rumors.”

Lemoine found “just 16 unarmed black men, out of a population of more than 20 million, were killed by the police…These figures are likely close to the number of black men struck by lightning in a given year. The comparison illustrates that these killings are incredibly rare, and that it’s completely misleading to talk about an ‘epidemic.’ You don’t hear people talk about an epidemic of lightning strikes and claim they are afraid to go outside because of it.”

The case for routine police harassment is just as fraudulent. Black men have less yearly contact with police than whites: 17.5 to 20.7 percent. And as for injury, protesters in the stadium have a greater chance of getting a rug burn at the hands of Monsanto than they do a bruise at the hands of the cops.

“Actual injuries by the police are so rare that one cannot estimate them very precisely even in a survey as big as the PPCS, but the available data suggest that only 0.08 percent of black men are injured by the police each year, approximately the same rate as for white men.” Lemoine reports.

It would make more sense to accuse the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration of brutality since black men are 44 times more likely to be injured in a car crash.

Lemoine’s conclusion: “The media’s acceptance of the false narrative poisons the relations between law enforcement and black communities throughout the country and results in violent protests that destroy property and sometimes even claim lives.”

So why are the knee people blaming ticket holders and the audience? There aren’t any billionaires, mayors or Members of Congress in the stands. All the people with real power are on the field insulting the blameless over a grievance that doesn’t exist.

During the Civil War black soldiers in the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry — immortalized in the movie “Glory” — could distinguish between individual bigots and the flag of the nation that was fighting to free the slaves.

I wonder why privileged football players, and their enablers in politics and the media, can’t do the same.