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Monday, August 29, 2016

Kaepernick: the new "catnip" for trolls.


Every morning I check my email. Then I check under the rock where dwell my Facebook trolls.

They are in high dudgeon this morning, antennae quivering indignantly, over one Colin Kaepernick. He is a pro football player and says he won't stand for the national anthem because America is a racist nation.

It's fascinating how, in all the discussions of this I have seen, the default response is the personal insult. He's washed up as a player; he was no good to begin with. Some team just decided to shower millions on his as a tax write-off, apparently.

Never mind that the ability to dissent is one of those useful things we get from the First Amendment. It's like the Leonardos one can actually see in the Louvre: everyone rushes past them to see the Mona Lisa, the Second Amendment of the arts, with her sexy, "is that an assault rifle in your pocket?" gaze.

One thing no one ever explains is, on whose authority are we required to stand, or place or hand over our heart? And how are we less American, or less patriotic, if we don't? Is there a scale of bad-American-ness if we only do it some times but not others? And am I a bad American for not capitalizing National Anthem?

One commenter I saw- as nearly as I can tell, a never-was calling Kaepernick a has-been- hit the Dial-A-Quote button and came up with "better to remain silent and be thought a fool than the speak and remove all doubt" (A. Lincoln, "source"), posting it with a satisfied SNAP!

Lincoln didn't say that business about fools. It didn't even appear in print until Abe had been dead 67 years.

Try Proverbs 17:28. It can be sourced accurately, and will make its user feel even more satisfyingly judgmental.

Or Dr Johnson, who really did say, "Patriotism is the last refuge of scoundrels."

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