My Opinion

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When Colin Kaepernick took a knee during the playing of the National Anthem as a protest against systemic racism in the US, he lost me. I did not see a poor disadvantaged black man, picked on and stomped on by a racist nation, but a black privileged athlete, playing in a sports where 70% of the players are black, where whites and other races could cry discrimination, the same with basketball, where token whites occupy the end of the bench. Multi-million dollar performers, the top 1% earners, pampered to no end till the end of their playing days. Predictably, when his usefulness precluded his days of being pampered, nobody dared pick up his contract and is now unemployed, the owners refusing to take on the baggage. President Trump however, reawakened his name and the controversy by taking on the practice as it spread on to the 12 year olds in Pop Warner football, egged on by adults with an agenda. Now we have a full blown controversy with more athletes signed on to the Colin Kaepernick show, with the herd mooing all the way to London, ironically displaying their ignorance when they showed allegiance to the Union Jack, the inventor of racism who bought and used slaves in the US or for that matter exercised racism in the whole British Colonial Empire, idiocy at its best.

Would it have made a difference if they knew? I don't think so, all they know is somebody mooed and they have to do it too and the usual suspects gave their anti-Trump bashing, with some justification after the Trumpet uttered the word SOB, and his signature "You are fired". It has become a fashionable expression of "free speech" to diss the American Flag, an American Symbol which many have lost their lives fighting for, for the privilege of living in it. Fortunately in all the functions I have been in with Fil-Am associations, with both National Anthems played, I have never seen a disrespectful gesture for over 5 decades. Maybe we as a group have much to thank for, although we have a few outliers who feel that they are a gift to the US and regularly spits condemnation for the Imperial Stars and Stripes, eschewing the bounties they have received.

A change of scenery, a change of ideals and it seems that we are as divided as ever, from the 8 years of Obamanation transitioning to America First, both with perceived undertones of racism, from both the black and the white perspective. From an apologetic Black, apologizing for America's Colonial and Imperial designs in the world, timid, lead from behind laissez faire politics, benign neglect of the world's flashpoints, kick the can down the road, to a brash can do America first WASP, asserting America's primacy in the world stage. Unfortunately, we are the lone superpower militarily and economically and getting involved in those flash points and doing the majority of the killing and the dying, with the world looking at Uncle Sam as the one and only top cop who can make a difference, thus incurring the wrath of the "evil doers" and the enmity of the peaceniks who sees those evil doers as revolutionaries for change. Poor Uncle Sam couldn't please everybody, first to be called when trouble brews and first to be blamed, the bull elephant entering a china shop with predictable destruction.

I don't know about you guys, but whether the Obamanation or the Trumpet is president of the US, though just an inanimate flag or anthem, it is a symbol of America and deserves better than being treated as a political football from both sides of the aisle.

Honorio M. Cruz MD FACS
Associate Editor of The Philippine Surgeon

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My Opinion

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