Obama Defends Kaepernick’s “Real, Legitimate Issues”




Well, this should come as a surprise to no one.

When President Obama was asked in China what he thought about Colin Kaepernick’s recent protest of the national anthem, the socialist-in-chief was ready and willing to defend the 49ers second-string quarterback.

“He’s following his constitutional right to make a statement,” Obama said at a press conference in Hangzhou on Monday. “I think there’s a long history of sports figures doing so.”

Obama made sure that reporters understood that he was not simply supporting Kaepernick’s right to speak out, but that he also sympathized with the quarterback’s message.

“I don’t doubt his sincerity,” Obama said. “I think he cares about some real, legitimate issues that have to be talked about. And if nothing else, he’s generated some conversation around some topics that need to be talked about.”

Those topics are the usual Black Lives Matter litany of complaints, so it’s difficult to see how Kaepernick’s protest has changed the nature of the discussion. If anything, his disrespect for the national anthem has only sharpened the existing lines of division. Sure, we’re all talking about it (for some reason), but that dialogue is getting less productive by the day.

Obama said that he understood why people would be upset about Kaepernick’s decision to stay seated for the Star-Spangled Banner, but he remained supportive of the gesture.

“I think there’s a lot of ways you can do it,” he said. “As a general matter when it comes to the flag and the national anthem and the meaning that it holds for our men and women in uniform and those who fought for us, that is a tough thing for them to get past, to then hear what his deeper concerns are.”

Obama, though expressed hope that Kaepernick’s detractors could get beyond that sticking point.

“Maybe some of his critics will start seeing he has a point around certain concerns around justice and equality,” he said.

Yeah? And if the United States suddenly changed to become more like the country of Colin Kaepernick’s fantasies, would he then be able to stand up and salute the flag?

Kaepernick’s not alone in believing that America can do better. The issue for some may not be racial injustice; it could be the top corporate tax rate; or the left’s war on freedom; or our crumbling infrastructure; or our ineffective fight against terrorism; or the ridiculous costs of cable television; or any of a trillion other imperfections.

The difference is, most Americans understand that it’s not up to the other 400 million citizens to bow to their every desire. They can see that, underneath their personal complaints, they have many reasons to be grateful for this country. They can see it even though they don’t get to play in the NFL.

What a pity – to realize your dreams and still be left wanting. To live in the greatest country ever conceived and still be ungrateful.

And what a shame, to have a president who thinks the same way.


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