Colin Kaepernick has a lot of people talking as of late. A lot of anger, a lot of admiration, and some ambivalence, depending on who you talk to.
My own view is that most people are fine and dandy with the notion of free speech, until they hear or see something that they don’t like. Which is interesting, because the whole point of freedom of speech is that it is there to protect expression that may be unpopular.
Ultimately, whether a person agrees with Kaepernick or not, I would like to see them at least grant him that space to voice his opinion. He is aware of the possible consequences in terms of lost endorsements or backlash. So let him speak out if he so chooses.
I like it when people have the guts to take a stand, even if it may cost them millions of dollars and intense backlash. Colin Kaepernick refusing to stand during the national anthem definitely has people talking as of late.
And I think it’s funny how some of the same people who are mad about Kaepernick complaining about America, because he’s rich, want to elect a billionaire named Trump, who has built a presidential campaign complaining about how America isn’t great.
Some people come to define words and concepts better than anything else possibly could. When I think of Ann Coulter, all I think of is “ugly.” I’m not commenting on her physical appearance. I’m talking about the disgusting and repugnant hate and ugliness that she exhibits at seemingly every opportunity she gets. Truly an ugly person.
This is another piece of wisdom, the source of which is uncertain. Some have attributed it to Mark Twain, others to Lincoln, among several other notable figures.
But there’s no doubt about who embodies it perfectly – TRUMP. The man who is his own worst enemy, who couldn’t keep his mouth shut to save his life (or his campaign.)
I have been reading different reactions to these statues of a naked Donald Trump that have popped up in cities around America, and it seems that most people find them somewhat distasteful. There’s also the “imagine if someone did this to Hillary…” trope. Some people say that while Trump may have it coming, that we shouldn’t stoop to the level of “body shaming,” etc. The statues are from the art group INDECLINE.
I look at it in the context of protest art. Sure, the statues may be in poor taste, offensive to look at or humiliating. But let’s not forget that this is a man who has slandered the president as the founder of America’s most hated terrorist enemy, as well as not so subtly suggested that people shoot his opponent. These are just the recent examples of the type of garbage that has come from Trump’s mouth, and don’t begin to demonstrate the types of things he has said and done to shame and mock other people.
So, it’s not surprising to me that an artist or group of artists might go to extremes in desecrating Trump’s image. To quote Cesar A. Cruz, “art should comfort the disturbed and disturb the comfortable.” The time for politeness regarding Trump is long gone.
And comparing it to someone doing the same to Hillary is bogus. Like her policies or not, Hillary Clinton has not gone out of her way to insult and degrade a multitude of people across the nation. So, yes, if someone did the same to Hillary, it would be seen as going too far, and with good reason. It’s just not the same with Trump.
As a general rule of thumb, when talking about how people relate to one another, “when they go low, we go high” should be the approach. We should try our best to not stoop to the level of someone like Trump. But when it comes to art, I think all bets are off. I don’t see this the same way I would see someone sending out private pics of Trump to humiliate him, for example.
Donald Trump has taken a no-holds barred approach to his campaign. He speaks his mind. He says what he means. He’s not “politically correct” Let’s not expect the opposite from artists making a statement about him.
The definitive source of this quote is unknown, although it often is attributed to Benjamin Franklin. To me, it doesn’t matter who said it. The message that ignorance is often willful remains loud and clear, regardless of the original author. And it is perfectly exemplified by the nonsense that has spewed from the Trump campaign, in particular from his spokesperson, Katrina Pierson.