Grievance Mongering: The Anthem Controversy Exposed Its Twisted Logic

Written by Andrew Allen on September 29, 2017

I don’t understand how Christian bakers can be forced against their will to bake wedding cakes for gay customers, but NFL players can’t be forced to act like men and stand when the anthem is played and the flag is displayed.

Maybe I expect too much from people that make millions of dollars playing a kid’s game. The NFL certainly expects far more from those who work on the corporate side of their enterprise – if all the secretaries and accountants at NFL headquarters and team offices decided to protest on company time chances are they’d be fired.

The knee-jerk reaction is to say “the NFL players have freedom of speech”. The jerks that say that are the same jerks that have no problem shutting down conservative speakers at Berkeley or beating up those attending a prayer rally in San Francisco. They are the 51% of college students that erroneously believe so-called hate speech isn’t protected by the First Amendment.

Anyway, comparing a Christian bakery with an NFL team is like comparing apples and oranges. The bakery after all is a privately owned business in which the owners have invested their money, talent, time, labor, and potential liability in order to sell a product. NFL teams extort the communities in which they occupy by threatening to leave town if taxpayers don’t fund their latest dream stadium. Living as I do in the shadow of Baltimore, I’m pretty sure the young men and women of color in Charm City would have a better lot in life if they had bakeries to work for rather than M & T Bank Stadium, home of the Ravens, down by the Inner Harbor. The stadium sits empty and idle more often than not.

In 1997 the Maryland General Assembly allocated $270 million toward construction of M & T Bank Stadium after the Browns left town. The 2015 riots in Baltimore cost the city around $20 million by comparison.

Does anyone really know where all this kneeling during the anthem stuff is supposed to take us? We’re told it isn’t supposed to be a slap in anyone’s face even though, as NFL ratings and sales figures indicate, a great many Americans feel like they’ve just been slapped in the face as opening ceremonies before NFL games descend down into the social justice rat hole. We’re told it’s all about bringing attention to racial disparities in America.

When isn’t some holier-than-thou activist trying to bring attention to any and all perceived disparities whether based on race, gender, or sexual identity? Then again if race, gender, sexual identity, and who knows what else are mere lifestyle choices one makes at will, how can there be disparities specific to those identities?

Of course, that assumes that by race one actually means race. The left explained that Clarence Thomas isn’t black. Dr. Ben Carson isn’t black. The left were unsure about Colin Powell and during the early months of Obama’s tenure as President there were discussions surrounding the authenticity of Obama’s blackness. Bill Clinton was proudly championed as the first black President though. Rachel Dolezal was a white girl who became a black girl and NAACP executive of her own free will.

The pinnacle is to be a member of more than one group with a grievance. For example, a straight black Jewish male doesn’t rank as high on the pecking order as a gay black Muslim. Among social justice activists it’s called intersectionality. If you are gay then you understand what it is like to be black because grievances are intersectional in nature. To belong to more than one grievance group allows you to live at the intersection of grievances.

So if you are gay, black, and Muslim where do you fall in among all the others with intesectionalized grievances? That’s up to the progressive stack. Community organizers rank and order the aggrieved based on the progressive stack at rallies and other events. That way, the most aggrieved get to speak first and most often. And if you are a straight white female? You’d better find some sort of grievance to grab on to because otherwise it’s sit down, shut up, and be harangued for your straight white femaleness.

The only way you can have a grievance is to suffer some injustice. To live at the intersection of more than one grievances means that you have to suffer lots of injustice. All the time. They are called microaggressions. For example, if I’m a transgendered Chinese Rastafarian and I believe the street lights on the highway are phallic symbols, I am suffering a microaggression that must be remedied.

Somehow, that remedy is named Hillary Clinton. Surely that’s a twist of logic only slightly less strange than the cesspool of social justice that has delivered us to this day and age in which NFL games showcase virtue signaling by a bunch of celebrity athletes more concerned with fitting in than with doing their jobs.

As a consequence, football just isn’t fun anymore. At least not at the professional level.

I remember when I was in the 4th grade the original Roots miniseries and other similar programming was in vogue. Our teacher was a black woman. One day at school the chatter ventured into topics of race and slavery. A young black kid eagerly fantasized “maybe one day the black people will make all the white people slaves.” Our teacher promptly scolded the young student for his statement. And then we moved on and had fun as kids are wont to do.

How come after eight fundamentally transformative years, ushered in by the we-are-the-ones-we’ve-been-waiting-for crowd, no one is happy anymore? Nothing is fun anymore. Everyone has a hashtag to tweet out because and an axe to grind. We’re just one giant grievance state from sea to shining sea these days, aren’t we?

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Share if you agree all this grievance mongering can get rather confusing.

Andrew Allen
Andrew Allen (@aandrewallen) grew up in the American southeast and for more than two decades has worked as an information technoloigies professional in various locations around the globe. A former far-left activist, Allen became a conservative in the late 1990s following a lengthy period spent questioning his own worldview. When not working IT-related issues or traveling, Andrew Allen spends his time discovering new ways to bring the pain by exposing the idiocy of liberals and their ideology.