Gwen Berry, who has made the U.S. Olympic hammer throwing team, is getting a lot of grief on social media over protesting during the National Anthem. Apparently conservatives have their panties in a twist. Ted Cruz has even chimed in asking why liberals hate America. He just needs to shut up. I could ask him why he hates Texas. He is the last person that should be throwing stones.
I have read a number of the comments Ms. Berry has gotten on Twitter and I’m seriously disgusted. Not surprisingly most of the comments came from white men. This comment in particular is something to behold…
I love it when people show their ass in public. It shows little class and much ignorance.
I hate to tell this guy that as an American from Missouri, Gwen can not “go back” to Africa. She didn’t come from Africa. Africa never was her home, so telling her to go back there is pretty ignorant. By calling someone “woke ass” he is implying that he isn’t, that he doesn’t give a rats ass what is going on in this country, because he comes from a place of privilege and it doesn’t affect him. I am seriously tired of these people.
I am tired of explaining why the feminist movement is a thing and why Black Lives Matter is a thing, and why we should care about gay and transgendered people and the whys of so many other things. I’m tired of lecturing on how religion has been used to oppress people, how straight cisgendered white Protestant men have oppressed everyone since the first settlers came to this country. At this point my head hurts. I feel like I would get further beating my head against the wall.
I ended up explaining the history of female oppression the other day to a man, because, as a man, he doesn’t see where sexism and misogyny is a thing because he doesn’t experience it. He told me that he doesn’t think that it’s as big of a problem as I, and others, make it appear. If only he could live a week or two as a woman.
The Tuskegee Airmen and The Red Tails were the same group. If you are going to “school” someone, at least know what you are taking about. Anyway, when these men came back from WWII they were still subjected to Jim Crow laws. They may have fought for their country, but they were not given any thanks and still shit on. Airman or not, once the war was over and they came back sate side they still were not allowed to use the same bathroom as white people, drink from the same fountains, walk on the same side of the road. Ms. Barry isn’t throwing anyone under a bus, the United States threw these people under a bus a long time ago. In fact, the United States continues to throw veterans under the bus. Veterans make up 6% of the population of the United States and account for 8% of homeless people. Veterans are also 1.5 times more likely to commit suicide than non-veterans due to PTSD and lack of resources to help them. 22 veterans take their life every day. This is something that can be prevented, but our government only cares if you serve, it doesn’t care what happens to afterward.
As for those people who championed the cause of the slaves, they only did half the job, as they didn’t care afterward if those ex-slaves had equal rights as human beings.
There was a time that I didn’t give the National Anthem any thought. We are indoctrinated to be loyal to our country no matter what, and that loyalty is supposed to extend to the government. It starts in school when we are supposed to stand and say the Pledge of Allegiance.. There is a fine line between patriotism and nationalism. A lot of people who claim they are patriotists are really nationalists. This country pays lip service to equality and justice for all but doesn’t walk the walk. If it did Black people would have the same opportunities white people did, they wouldn’t have to work twice as hard to get into colleges and universities, we wouldn’t have unarmed black men dying at the hands of police officers, red lining would have never become a thing, black schools would be funded the same as white schools. I could go on, after all, I have not gotten into how Muslims are treated, or how all Asians are lumped together and stereotyped and subjected to benevolent prejudice. Saying Asians are good at math is still racism, even if it’s a positive stereotype. Being the model minority does have its price.
It is probably a good thing that he has his phone number listed on his Twitter signature where everyone knows who not to give their business to. I mean, if he is this uneducated about slavery, he’s probably uneducated about a lot of other things.
In Africa debt slavery, enslavement of war captives, military slavery, slavery for prostitution, and criminal slavery were practiced. These are all very different than the chattel slavery practiced in the United States. These African slaves were often freed after a specific time of servitude, even if slaves were traded or sold across tribes. Many of these slaves were allowed to profit from their service, marry, and pass their land and wealth on to their children. When the Portuguese arrived and bought slaves, they did not understand the custom of freeing slaves when their time of servitude was up. These people were taken away from their homeland with no chance of ever returning home. And then chattel slavery happened. Chattel slavery took away all rights of the human beings enslaved along with the rights of their children and grand-children and their great-grandchildren. Families were separated, and the enslaved were abused. They were given scraps to eat and women had to give birth in the fields while working. These people were used as medical guinea pigs and surgery performed on them without anesthetic. Religion and scientific racism were used as justification for slavery.
When the slaves were emancipated, they were promised 40 acres and a mule where they could support themselves. The government went back on this promise and a large portion of these people were stuck working for those who had previously enslaved them, being paid barely enough to survive.
I am so done with these conservative nationalists who only know Eurocentric history taught in America’s schools and choose to cherry pick it without knowing all the facts. It shows an unwillingness to learn, it shows narrow-mindedness and ignorance. It shows that they really don’t care about the issues that other people on this planet have to deal with. They are part of the problem. They know that America was built by white straight cisgendered men for white straight cisgendered men, and they are afraid of loosing power. It was their ancestors that fought against the suffragettes and enacted Jim Crow laws.
Believing in true equality and justice for all does not make us special snowflakes. It does not mean we have shit for brains. It means we care about our fellow humans and the inequalities that they suffer. It means we want to see a broken system fixed. Until this country can walk that walk of equality and justice for all more people need to protest the National Anthem and the flag.