An apology to Colin Kaepernick

It’s easy (and tempting) to demonize those with whom we disagree, but it isn’t helpful. Nobody likes to be labeled with unflattering names. Unfortunately, I must admit that I’m just as guilty as anyone else to sometimes being judgmental and perhaps a bit of hypocrite, should I attempt to excuse myself from being equally culpable.

For example, I feel that I owe Colin Kaepernick an apology for writing that he was “nothing but an average to mediocre football player and an attention-seeking clown who doesn’t deserve any of Cam Newton’s respect.”

The truth of the matter is that I’m not an expert on NFL quarterbacks. My opinions have obviously been jaded by the fact it upsets me to see NFL players showing what I interpreted as disrespect for the national anthem. Furthermore, I’ve also been an NFL fan for much of my life and vividly remember that “my” Atlanta Falcons were denied a trip to the Super Bowl because they couldn’t stop Colin Kaepernick and the San Francisco 49ers in the 2012 NFC Championship Game. So for me to describe Mr. Kaepernick’s NFL talent level as average to mediocre is dubious at best, and ridiculous at worst.

On the other hand, I love this land of my birth, where Mr. Kaepernick has been given the opportunity to earn millions of dollars because of his athletic talent. In previous years he has excelled playing a game that requires toughness, intelligence, and extraordinary skill to play well. Truth be known, the excessively harsh rhetoric I previously used to describe Mr. Kaepernick smacks of being sour grapes when it comes to my personal opinion. Perhaps the most appropriate description of my attitude would be “sore loser.”

By the same token, I’m well aware that all of this nonsense didn’t start until Kaepernick started taking a knee during the anthem last year. It’s true that simple gesture of silent protest has significantly damaged a business that has provided me with entertainment for most of my adult life. I am also keenly aware that Mr. Kaepernick likes to make questionable fashion statements by wearing t-shirts honoring murderous Communist dictators like Fidel Castro, sometimes accessorizing his attire with socks decorated with pigs wearing police uniforms. All of this information has surely created some degree of bias toward Colin Kaepernick in my mind, because I consider myself a patriot.

What I didn’t know was that Mr. Kaepernick had originally planned to sit during the national anthem. Out of respect for a former Green Beret named Nate Boyer (after the two men met privately) Kaepernick decided to kneel as a compromise — with Boyer kneeling on the field right there next to him.

It also occurs to me that one of my biggest objections to the antics of Mr. Kaepernick was it insulted the service of soldiers like Mr. Boyer, who took credit for the idea that Mr. Kaepernick kneel during the anthem in the first place, which makes my objections  look rather silly. It isn’t fair to lambast Mr. Kaepernick for being willing to listen, and compromise. So I must apologize.

Mr. Kaepernick seems very concerned about the issues championed by Black Lives Matter — police brutality and the targeting of young black men by the cops. I just don’t think I have any credibility to speak with him about that issue.

I don’t expect him to listen to my thoughts and opinions, but I sure would like him to speak with Larry Elder and learn the truth about those controversial claims. I could be persuaded by Mr. Kaepernick to take the complaints of the Black Lives Matter movement seriously, assuming that he can produce better evidence than Mr. Elder cited from the FBI about gun violence involving blacks.

NFL players truly believe they are sacrificing to promote the noble cause of social justice, and NFL owners will eventually have to perform a cost/benefit analysis. The protesting players might make the difference between one or two more wins per year, but if total revenue declines by 25 percent, are these players worth the damage being done to the business operating the game? The popularity of the game has been adversely affected by these protests taking place on the field. The league is not producing income like it has in years past. Attendance at games have dropped. Merchandise sales have dropped. Sales of DirecTV’s NFL Sunday Ticket have dropped. The owners cannot print money, but existing contracts must be honored regardless of whether the team is making money. It won’t happen overnight, but future NFL player contracts will need to be negotiated for less money, because fewer fans are watching games.

Something’s got to give. I can’t speak for every fan, but it’s not going to be me.

People like Mr. Kaepernick tend to mystify me, because of the incongruity of the millionaire Socialist. After all, it would be his wealth redistributed in a true Marxist society, not mine. He’s earned more money for a part-time job, sitting on a bench, than I’ve earned in my entire working career — and I’ve always been paid a fair salary to compensate me for the work I’ve done. And I say, good for him. Is this a great country, or what? There’s just no reason for me to be jealous of Colin Kaepernick. The 49er organization felt he was worth it.

For that matter, I should not envy more successful authors like James Patterson or Michael Connelly. Good for them. If I want the same sort of success for my novels as those whose achievements I admire, I need to work even harder. It’s incentive. I know it can be done. I just haven’t figured out how to do it myself — not yet, anyway.

In 1989 I spent six months working in Hong Kong, at a time when residents of the city were scared. The Chinese were scheduled to assume control of the government from the British in 1997, and people were gravely concerned that the Communists would destroy a thriving capitalist economy. Many citizens of Hong Kong began applying for permission to immigrate, desperate to escape the threat of Communist rule. My passport was probably stolen (I had been paranoid about losing it), forcing me to visit the U.S. embassy to get a new one. The line wrapped around the embassy fence and seemed to stretch forever. It looked like thousands of people had come to apply for an immigration visa to the U.S. and got there long before my arrival at the back of the line.

When I fretted aloud that I would be away from the office much longer than I’d anticipated, the person waiting in front of me turned and smiled, then said, “You’re an American. You don’t have to wait. You can go to the front of the line.”

He was absolutely right. I didn’t have to wait more than ten minutes to meet with an embassy representative. I still had my driver’s license, making it easy to prove I was a U.S. citizen. It’s a wonderful privilege, to be an American.

If only every American understood that, and felt the same way.

Cam Newton’s Inexcusable Comment

The lame stream media had a hissy fit after Carolina Panther’s quarterback Cam Newton said that it sounded funny to hear a female reporter asking a knowledgeable question about pass routes in a press conference. It was interpreted to be a sexist comment on Newton’s part. Consequences for his (perceived) politically incorrect remark were swift and severe — Newton lost a lucrative endorsement deal with Dannon Yogurt.

However, that isn’t the most offensive public comment that Cam Newton has made lately, not by a long shot. He recently described Colin Kaepernick as a “legend” who has made the ultimate sacrifice in the name of social justice.

Really? Usually when someone uses the phrase “ultimate sacrifice”, they are referring to a hero from the military or a law enforcement officer who literally has died in service of our country — all these brave men and women had, as well as everything they would ever have. Their entire future. They aren’t talking about a multi-millionaire trying to draw attention to the fact he walked off the job after losing his job as the starting quarterback, who turned himself into a public spectacle by kneeling during the national anthem while promoting radical liberal causes hyped with lies and deceit.

Cam Newton is a very talented athlete who is actively involved in community service and seems to be a genuinely nice person. I can both understand and forgive the first mistake he made. My wife was a cheerleader, so she never watched the games, and quite frankly, I’d be shocked if she knew the difference between a fly route, a fade, and a post pattern.

On the other hand, it isn’t her job to know because she’s a senior manager of IT professionals for a large corporation, not a sports reporter. So in my opinion, the first misstatement was inappropriate, but not inexcusable.

Describing Colin Kaepernick’s theatrics as making the ultimate sacrifice is incredibly offensive, and there is no excuse for it. He didn’t die; he quit his job.

Martin Luther King, Jr. was a legend. Rosa Parks was a legend.

Colin Kaepernick is nothing but an average to mediocre football player and an attention-seeking clown who doesn’t deserve any of Cam Newton’s respect.

He deserves nothing but contempt.

Mixing Race and Politics in Professional Sports

Adults gifted with special physical talents are often handsomely rewarded for their skills playing games that most of us stopped playing after high school.

Even athletes considered to have mediocre talent when compared to their professional competition are paid significantly more than the average American family — the median household income in 2016 for an American family was a little more than $59, 000. Yet for some bizarre reason, a baseball player earning a half million dollars a year felt the need to kneel during our national anthem, because of what he described as racial inequality, in a country where the president for the last eight years was a black man.

Apparently few people understand that the origins and true purpose of the Black Lives Matter movement was to promote the agenda of a group of radical feminist lesbians by capitalizing on tragedies and calling them crimes. According to “Herstory” at the official BLM website, the perceived current leaders of BLM (Shaun King, for example) are actually pretenders:

When you design an event / campaign / et cetera based on the work of queer Black women, don’t invite them to participate in shaping it, but ask them to provide materials and ideas for next steps for said event, that is racism in practice.  It’s also hetero-patriarchal. Straight men, unintentionally or intentionally, have taken the work of queer Black women and erased our contributions.  Perhaps if we were the charismatic Black men many are rallying around these days, it would have been a different story, but being Black queer women in this society (and apparently within these movements) tends to equal invisibility and non-relevancy.

In essence, the Black Lives Matter movement has been based on lies and false impressions, perpetuating the myth that young black males are in constant danger of being murdered by the police. Trayvon Martin was not murdered. According to Florida law, he was legally killed in self defense by a Hispanic man that the media claimed was a “white” Hispanic. Likewise, Michael Brown was not murdered by Officer Darren Wilson; he was shot in self defense. Yet these are the lies on which the Black Lives Matter movement was founded. Had there been the slightest impropriety in either legal case, the Obama Justice Department led by Eric Holder would have crucified the accused.

The purpose of this “movement” is clearly to foment racial tensions and to undermine the police, making them hesitate when a split-second decision might cost a law enforcement officer their own life. Most disturbingly, criminals are being treated as martyrs.

Yes, there have been a few examples of police brutality caught on film — Rodney King comes to mind. There are even a few incidents where the police arguably murdered an innocent civilian, or at least shot a civilian by accident, mistaking them for a criminal. However, every law enforcement officer in uniform also has the right to make it safely home to his or her family at the end of the workday.

As Chris Rock suggested years ago in this humorous “educational” video, if you haven’t done anything wrong, the wisest course of action is to cooperate fully with the police.

[WARNING: EXPLICIT ADULT LANGUAGE]

Alleged BLM leader Shaun King recently called for a boycott of the NFL during a season in which games have already been played to half-empty stadiums. More fans attended the college football game between the USC Trojans and Texas Longhorns than went to the games of two NFL teams combined. In a way, I feel some measure of sympathy for professional ballplayers like former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick and rookie baseball player Bruce Maxwell. They have been manipulated into believing lies that will ultimately cause great economic harm to the very businesses that can afford to pay their exorbitant salaries. These people are killing their own careers.

In this brilliant interview with Dave Rubin, Larry Elder used statistics to expose the lies on which the Black Lives Matter movement was founded.

Elder: “Give me the most blatant racist example you can come up with, right now.”

Rubin: “Um, I think you could probably find evidence that in general, cops are more willing to shoot if the perpetrator is black than white.”

Elder: “What’s your data? What’s your basis for saying that? Last year…”

Rubin: “Well look, I know a lot of people who would say, look at what’s going on in Chicago…”

Elder: “I know what they would say, but I’m talking about what the facts are — 965 people were shot by cops last year and killed. Four percent of them were white cops shooting unarmed blacks. In Chicago, in 2011, twenty-one people were shot and killed by cops. In 2015, there were seven. In Chicago, which is one third black, one third white, and one third Hispanic, seventy percent of the homicides are black on black. About forty per month, almost five hundred per year in Chicago, and seventy-five percent of them are unsolved. Where is the Black Lives Matter on that? The idea that a racist white cop is shooting unarmed black people is a peril to black people, is B.S.”

Professional athletes have the same right to protest as every other American citizen. However, they should keep in mind that their fans are more likely to be proud American citizens as not, and their actions will inevitably have consequences. A lot of their fans earn a lower income per family than some of these players make for playing (or even riding the bench) in one game. It’s noble to risk one’s livelihood in support a worthy cause, but to perpetuate a lie is neither noble or intelligent. Statistics don’t lie. Only four percent of the homicides by cops were committed by white officers shooting unarmed black civilians, while seventy percent of murdered blacks were killed by other blacks.

That’s not what the people involved with Black Lives Matter want you to believe, though. And as long as they can prey on public figures who are easy to manipulate, they will continue to have success inspiring racial hatred and irrational fears.

Black lives do matter. Of course, white lives matter just as much — no more, and no less. In fact, all lives matter — and that obviously includes the lives of police as well.

DUMB: BLM Activist Shaun King Accuses Philadelphia Eagles of Racism for Refusing to Sign Kaepernick

Football is a sport. Professional football is a sports-related entertainment business. The distinction matters. Businesses exist to make money. Period. End of sentence; end of debate. Any business that fails to satisfy the customer’s expectations is doomed.

That’s a simple fact of life that seems to have eluded leadership of social justice causes. Enter Shaun King, professional agitator.

Of course, to actually understand business one would actually have to work for a living, rather than constantly trying to foment racial tensions to turn a quick buck, but it’s obviously much easier to make demonstrably false claims about an NFL franchise so people donate to the cause. So King recently tweeted that Philadelphia Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie had publicly announced that his team would never sign QB Colin Kaepernick because of his kneeling protest of the national anthem.

The only problem is that the tweet wasn’t remotely close to being true. The Eagles soon released the transcript of what Mr. Lurie actually said — which was the team was currently happy with their current quarterback situation, but if anything changed, the team would be interested in a further evaluation of Mr. Kaepernick as a potential replacement for an injured or under-performing team member.

Mr. King asserted that the Eagles retained a white player in the past known for using a racial epithet in order to portray the team as discriminating against Kaepernick because of race, while conveniently ignoring the fact that the Eagles had also employed Michael Vick after his release from prison at the risk of alienating animal lovers nationwide. Other critics have more generously described Mr. King’s tweet as unfair, wrong, and inaccurate.

Personally, I think they were deliberate and malicious lies being spread for personal profit.

Sure enough, the professional rabble-rouser doubled down. Rather than apologizing for what theoretically could have been an honest mistake, King has since called for a general boycott of the NFL. Presumably he intends to lead public pressure on the entire league until somebody capitulates and offers Kaepernick a contract.

Once again, the problem for Mr. King is his lack of understanding that professional football is a business with a customer base known as the general public.

This includes some people who are sympathetic to Black Lives Matter protestors, and others who aren’t. In reality, no one has deprived Colin Kaepernick of his First Amendment rights to free speech. At the same time, no business has an obligation to hire and pay someone millions of dollars for the privilege of potentially angering millions of their customer base and potentially causing themselves financial harm.

People also seem to forget that Kaepernick was under contract. He got greedy and opted out, gambling he’d make more money. He took the risk, and should have known the reward was not guaranteed. The problem for a player like Kaepernick is that football is a team game where the quarterback manages the offense, but that doesn’t always make him the best player on the team.

In fact, Trent Dilfer only passed for about 150 yards and one touchdown, but still led the Baltimore Ravens to victory in Super Bowl XXXV because he didn’t turn the ball over. He played smart and didn’t try to do too much. Ray Lewis was the star on that team.

Strangely enough, the same networks who pay millions of dollars to the NFL for the privilege of televising games continue to call attention to the small minority of players protesting such as Michael Bennett, Marshawn Lynch, or Kaepernick.

It would seem that if the cameras simply stopped panning the sidelines during the anthem and stopped reporting on the players showing disrespect to the very country giving them the opportunity to earn millions of dollars, for one year of work, people might forget about Kaepernick and someone might even decide he’s worth the risk and the headache of having an attention-seeking player on the team.

After all, teams need fans, but ideally, they also want to win football games. Perhaps the league ought to consult with their business associates about this issue.

The NFL must compete for entertainment dollars with many other possibilities including college football, which some fans already prefer. The problem for the league is simple economics. Fans making less than $75,000 per year may not want to spend more than $100 per ticket to watch an average to mediocre player sit on his fanny as a deliberate show of disrespect for this land of opportunity. Quite frankly, it’s bad for business to let a few disgruntled employees drive away their customer base, especially if the customers perceive the anger issues are somewhat directed toward them.

That’s Economics 101. I’m guessing Mr. King must have studied drama instead.

Ditka Dismisses NFL National Anthem Protesters

With a new NFL season comes another round of players protesting during while the Star Spangled Banner plays. In the first week of the season, several players protested by sitting during the anthem or raising a fist in the “black power” salute while standing during the national anthem. Other players expressed solidarity with the protesters by placing their hands on their demonstrating teammates’ shoulders.

Both sides of the political aisle have weighed in on the protests, but not many people have weighed in as fervently as legendary coach and television analyst Mike Ditka. Here’s what he had to say:

“People are gonna do what they want to do — this is a different generation. In other words, they think a lot of things don’t apply to them,” Ditka told TMZ on Monday. “Don’t forget now that that’s a minority, so for the majority of people who are going to understand what 9/11 meant, what this country stands for, the values that we have, and they’re gonna go in that direction.

“You can’t stop everybody. There’s always going to be some malcontents,” he said. “So let them be malcontents, let them do their thing. They’ll move on. Nobody will think about it, nobody will remember who they were.”

That’s a bold statement, for sure. But is it on point? Colin Kaepernick, the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback who started the national anthem controversy last year may still sit at home unsigned on Sundays, but he’s managed to remain in the headlines and may well maintain an infamous place in NFL history.

Here’s the thing: these players desperately want to say something with their protests, but it’s not always clear what. If you’re going to make a statement, why not make one like the Cleveland Browns did before their season opener:

Because unity is one of the most powerful values teams can hold up during this times, isn’t it?

The Colin Kaepernick Solution




When last we checked in on Colin Kaepernick, he was unemployed and Disney-ESPN was concerned his joblessness was due to being blackballed by the NFL team owners. Not withstanding the fact that he’s 29 years old with previous injuries, is statistically in the basement among current NFL quarterbacks, and his salary demands are extremely unreasonable.

Over the past few days, Disney-ESPN has been busy working through the relocation of General Robert E. Lee’s secret Asian descendant: Robert Lee, leaving a void the NAACP was only to happy to occupy. (CBS Sports)

The NAACP’s interim president Derrick Johnson has officially requested a formal meeting with NFL commissioner Roger Goodall to discuss NFL players and their ability to exercise their First Amendment rights. According to a letter sent to the league by the NAACP, the meeting will specifically focus on Kaepernick’s perceived “blackballing” by the league in light of his protests last season. It also questions the silencing of NFL players’ platforms, citing Tommie Smith and John Carlos’s black power salute at the 1968 Olympics, among other examples.

According to their own website, the NAACP mission is: (NAACP)

The mission of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) is to ensure the political, educational, social, and economic equality of rights of all persons and to eliminate race-based discrimination.

Maybe the NAACP isn’t concentrating on racial discrimination because: (Vice Sports)

African-American males are only six percent of the United States population, but comprise nearly 70 percent of the players in the National Football League.

If the NAACP had bothered calling any of that 70%, they would have found out Roger Goodall doesn’t hire quarterbacks. They could have been further educated on the fact that Mr. Goodall is in fact himself employed by those that do hire QBs, and certainly isn’t about to jump into this briar patch. But they can take consolation in the fact they beat Al Sharpton and Sheila Jackson Lee to the punch here. Kudos.



For all of their caterwauling consternation, the NAACP has zero chance of strong-arming the NFL into hiring Mr. Kaepernick. Emphasizing a First Amendment violation where none exist does Colin no favors, and equating kneeling with standing with a raised fist is thin gruel.

Enter Disney-ESPN. They and they alone can provide the solution to this Gordian knot, and help themselves out at the same time. It seems ESPN has a very real racial employment problem. Out of all the NFL analysts employed with ESPN, it appears only Andre Ware is black and a former NFL quarterback. Now that is patently discriminatory which must be rectified soonest.

Disney-ESPN should offer Colin a job as a NFL analyst PDQ. This will solve a whole host of problems which are pressing themselves into the American psyche. Having lurched so far to the left they make Bernie Sanders look positively moderate, ESPN can take a victory lap in front of an appreciative America. Appreciative because they will no longer have to hear about a millionaire’s employment problems.

With the Disney-ESPN platform, especially ESPN OCHO, Mr. Kaepernick can look forward to a vast loving audience in Cuba and Venezuela, if not here in the good ole USA. Good on him. He can drag out his Che Guevara shirt and rest easy knowing his girlfriend’s claim will find fertile ground south of the border. (Daily Mail)

Nessa Diab, the MTV host and Hot 97 DJ who has dated Kaepernick, 29, for the past two years, compared Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti to a slave master and Lewis to one of his captives on Twitter after reports revealed they had hesitations about signing the football-playing free agent.

Good times.

Colin’s salary demands should be no problem either. Disney can always make an animated movie documenting this sordid affair.  “Kneeling While Black – The Colin Kaepernick Story” is sure to do better than Fantasia, and will no doubt be a cult favorite among the counter-protesting SJW set.

Win-Win-Win. Who said conservatives can’t find compromise?

 

 

 

 

Jesse Jackson Forgets that the NFL is a Business and No One Can Force Teams to Sign Colin Kaepernick




Because we’ve all been on pins and needles waiting on his thoughts, Jesse Jackson has weighed in on the refusal of pretty much every NFL team to sign Colin Kaepernick. For what it’s worth, Jackson believes that the NFL and the players association are derelict in not forcing a team to sign the quarterback, who has become a lightning rod of controversy over the past year.

“The NFL has ignored him,” Jackson said in an interview with Black Sports Online. “The commissioner has not spoken out to say he should not be ‘blackballed,’ as it were. But more than that, the players’ association has been silent, and it’s their silence that astonishes me.”

Jackson and others believe Kaepernick has been blackballed from the NFL as a result of his national anthem protests and comments about police brutality against minorities.

Jackson asserts that Kaepernick has been punished for participating in “legitimate, American and free protests against abusive behavior toward black people.”

For the record, the NFL Players Association has expressed plenty of support of Kaepernick, so Jackson is missing some of the facts in his assertion.



Here’s the thing: Kaepernick may have some legitimate points regarding police treatment of black men, but refusing to stand for the national anthem is a boneheaded way to make those points (and the t-shirt and praise for Fidel Castro don’t lend credibility either). But regardless of what your beliefs on Kaepernick’s protests are, the First Amendment that we all love gives him the right to say what he wants to say, no matter how ridiculous.

At the same time, our wonderful free enterprise system gives team owners the right to say no to signing Kaepernick. You see, Rev. Jackson, the NFL is a private business, and there’s no guarantee of employment in professional football for anybody. I’ll never understand why anyone believes that Kaepernick has a right to a starting quarterback position anywhere.

It’s the same principle that applied when, say, Curt Schilling said something controversial and ESPN fired him. The brouhaha over Colin Kaepernick has led the NFL to basically declare him persona non grata. If it’s good for a controversial conservative, it should be good for a provocative liberal too. And if a team wants to take a chance on Kaepernick, good for them, but if they don’t, good for them all the same.

At the end of the day, free enterprise is as important as free speech.