Okay, boys and girls, gather ’round and I’ll tell you another story about…Captain Deflecto! (applause, excited squeals)
Who, in the guise of President donald trump, uses his amazing powers of deflection to turn America’s attention away from issues that matter to this country, such as, oh, I don’t know, North Korea, healthcare, race relations, hurricane victims, refugees scattered everywhere like so many bits of trash, the ever-widening wage gap, and so many other complex problems we face in our country, and our world.
No, Captain Deflecto told a crowd in Alabama last weekend at a rally for Republican Senate nominee Luther Strange; let’s talk about that football-playing “son of a bitch” who dares to kneel during the playing of our national anthem.
Why, he should be fired! Thrown out! All the fans should leave the stadium, right then!
Way to lead, Captain.
What he was doing, of course, was throwing some more raw meat out for his loyal followers to devour, so they can smile back at him with their bloody faces and call out affectionately, “Attaboy, donald! Don’t you take no shit off nobody!”
Pitiful. The whole scene is pitiful.
(Oh, and just for good measure, he also withdrew his invitation for the NBA champion Golden State Warriors to visit the White House, since a member of the team publicly voiced misgivings about going. Fine, if he’s not coming, none of you are! was his mature response.)
The biggest sports story of the weekend, by a mile, was him. Since he likes being the biggest story all the time, that probably suited him juuust fine.
So, Captain Deflecto, as he has many times before, artfully directed America’s attention away from all those insignificant little items I mentioned earlier, and has all of America talking instead about…that damned, unpatriotic National Football League. Which also, conveniently, deflects his attention from all the things he should actually be concerned about, but has no clue how to deal with.
The NFL, incidentally, has since come back on him like a six-man blitz. Even some of the team owners, really rich friends of the Captain, sharply rebuked him for his harsh criticism. I like that.
I know, it’s way too optimistic for me to believe, this may ignite the actual dialogue on race that Colin Kaepernick was hoping to inspire the first time he took a knee. It’ll probably just be more of the same blather about disrespecting the flag, disrespecting our troops, yada, yada, yada.
Which, as has been explained time and time again, completely misses the point.
But we don’t want to talk about Kaepernick’s concerns over mistreatment of minorities and all the black men getting killed at the hands of policemen. That’s just too uncomfortable.
We’re talking about a very emotionally charged subject here in which I can’t imagine the two sides possibly being more opposite each other. Each side has experienced a life that has virtually nothing in common with the other, making understanding and finding common ground next to impossible.
Because, unfortunately, when it comes to an honest and direct conversation about race relations, too many of us are Captain Deflecto’s, as well.