When Barack Obama was elected to the U.S. presidency in 2008, many Americans hoped that racial division, however small or large the remnants may have been, would draw to an end and our nation would unify people from all social backgrounds and colors. Citizens voted for positive change, an end to division, and a leader that was believed to hold the secrets to get us there. Instead, the opposite came true. When more than 60 million Americans, the vast majority of whom were white, elected the first black American president, a paradoxical reversal of the country’s racial mending ensued.
It is plausible to argue that Obama didn’t want his racial composition to define his presidency, at least not in the beginning. Given that he was raised by white grandparents in Hawaii, one of the nation’s most integrated states, he most likely never shared the plight of blacks in different areas of the country. However, his decades-long relationship with anti-Semitic Reverend Jeremiah Wright and the media’s disclosure of the nature of his anti-American, conspiracy-leaning sermons led to more questions than answers. After Obama briefly denounced Wright’s most controversial statements, despite having maintained a relationship with him for decades, the media, for inexplicable reasons, accepted the denunciation, and the case was closed.
Following the acquittal of George Zimmerman and the shootings of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri and Eric Garner in New York City, the activist movement Black Lives Matter (BLM) was launched by the mere use of a viral hashtag. BLM caused chaos wherever they went, and the country went on to witness riots and civil unrest. Businesses were looted, cars were set on fire, and citizens believed themselves to be fighting for civil rights they had been denied by those in power, despite the election of a black president. Destruction and chaos were occurring in America at a level that, until previously, mainly occurred in the third world. The spiraling nature of violence is well documented and understood; one need look no further than the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Unfortunately, this spiral has led to the ambushing and killing of dozens of police officers across the country, by those who wrongfully believed they were acting for social justice.
These events, no doubt, exacerbated the fears of Americans across the country and led to the election of President Donald J. Trump. The election was predicted to be a slam dunk for Hillary Clinton, and the Obamas campaigned their best to ensure “their legacy” remained intact. Americans across the heartland, with the exception of the staunchly Democrat-beset coastal states, worried that their communities could be the next enclaves of violence brought on by a narrative that was not only untrue but dangerous. When the Left lost the presidential election, it moved to launch a culture war and perpetuate the race narrative that has been a predictable winner in the game of perpetual victimhood.
Today, as the NFL and various other professional sports players have begun to protest and dishonor the anthem of the United States by kneeling instead of standing, our culture only secures further division at a time when unity is paramount. While their right to protest and express themselves is not in question, the flag they are protesting is the very one which allows them the freedom to play sports professionally, earning millions of dollars a year, based solely on their aptitude for the sport and completely regardless of race. Does anyone else find it paradoxical that the world of professional sports has chosen to adopt the behavior of losing politicians, that of a sore loser?
©2017 Republicans in France/Anntoinette Lorrain/Gina Hunt