Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Donald Trump vs. the NFL et al.: Free Speech, Patriotism ... Blacklists and Firing Blacks

Coming to very different conclusions, a couple of my friends going back to high school have argued or allowed on athletes' "taking a knee" that "it is within the rights of the owners to fire them." Under the "employment-at-will doctrine," this is indeed the case, though there are competing theories on job security.

Firing for political reasons, however,  is also in the tradition of the 1940s and 1950s Blacklists 
and the attenuated loyalty-oath requirements which lasted for teachers in the two states I worked in until, at least, 1971.

Additionally, given the racial implications, Americans should overcome our historical amnesia enough to recall the brag of the National States Rights Party during the time of the civil rights movements that they have "been preaching a 'Fire Your Nigger' campaign at our meetings to force more of them to leave the South" (my on-line source cites here The Kansas City Star for 7/21/63; I can remember a later call by White racists — White Citizens Councils? — for a "Fire Your Nigger Day").

There's history here, and some pretty nasty parallels, oNr parallels once we pass the possibly unique instance of a US president taking time away from fire, storm, and flooding national disasters and picking two fights involving nuclear weapons — to defend patriotic gestures and question quiet protest.

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