As the beginning of the 2018 season of the National Football League finally approaches, so too does the social polarization over player protests against police brutality and institutional racism jump back into the forefront of public discourse.
In case anyone was still on the fence about whether the vocal conservative opposition to NFL players choosing to kneel during the national anthem was about “respect for the flag” or just barely disguised racism, one Republican county secretary has decided to clear it up for us.
Beaver, Pennsylvania’s The Times newspaper is reporting that Carla Maloney of Hopewell Township made some extremely racist Facebook posts last year in which she called kneeling NFL players “baboons” after the majority of the Pittsburg Steelers (with the exception of scab left tackle Alejandro Villanueva) decided to remain in the locker room in a show of solidarity rather than stand for the anthem before their September 24th loss to the Chicago Bears.
Writing under the name “Carla Belich Fueller,” Maloney complained that she was “tired of these over paid ignorant blacks telling me what I should believe in. I will tell you what I believe in and that is our Flag the National Anthem and America period end of story. You don’t like it here go to Africa see how you like it there. We are all Americans not African American not Hispanic American. WE ARE ALL AMERICAN.”
It then got worse.
“Steelers are now just as bad as the rest of the over paid baboons. You respect your flag, country and our national anthem. How many men and women have lost limbs or died to protect this country and you baboons want respect. If you want respect you need to earn it and so far you haven’t. Stop watching, or going to a game and paying for over priced food, water and tickets. Let’s see how the baboons get paid when white people stop paying their salaries.”
From the beginning, it was obvious that white supremacy was a central part of the Trump-led campaign to distort the narrative and paint the athletes as overentitled and selfish traitors who didn’t care about their country and don’t deserve the money they earn for sacrificing their bodies and futures for our entertainment.
While the posts were made before she was made GOP county secretary, the chairman of the Republican Committee of Beaver County admitted to knowing about the posts when she was chosen as secretary but conveniently could not remember if he brought them up to the rest of the committee.
“Those comments do not reflect the opinions of the Republican Party as a whole” he offered as a weak excuse. But after seeing the President rage at NFL players and calling them “sons of bitches,” it’s clear that these comments do in fact reflect the entire Republican Party.
This is just more proof that the real issue at stake is a black man’s right to speak out against systematic injustice and has nothing to do with the superficial display of “patriotism” that the majority of NFL viewers are busy ignoring while they cram beer and wings down their gullets and check their fantasy lineups.