Stop normalizing the brittle sensibilities of social justice warriors

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by David Harsanyi,

from The Federalist,

Colin Kaepernick has made a fantastic living out of protesting the America flag.

That’s fine. No political speech should be inhibited, not even pseudo-intellectual historical revisionism. But let’s stop pretending that kneeling during the national anthem at sporting events is really about “respecting the flag” or criminal justice reform or any fixable policy problem.

Whatever the underlying causes for Kaepernick’s popularity—some of them certainly legitimate—these protests are acts of contempt toward an irredeemable nation created in sin. This view of our founding is an increasingly popular position on the left. And if it ever takes hold in mainstream American life, we’re in real trouble.

After all, everything about the founding is—tenuously or otherwise—connected to an “era of slavery.” This pretty much means not only every patriotic symbol of the era, but all the principles that gird the small-l, freedom-guaranteeing liberalism that was codified by the founders—many of whom, it should be stressed, were far more enlightened than their contemporary critics, certainly the Fidel Castro-praising Kaepernick.

Without this tangible set of enduring ideals, we have nothing as a national entity but a batch of constantly evolving progressive grievances.

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