This Thanksgiving, Trump Wants Black Athletes to Be More Thankful

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You’re welcome. Photo: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images

All the president is asking for is a little bit of gratitude. Is that really too much to ask? When a country has done this much for a person? When the most powerful government on planet Earth has gone above and beyond to advance that person’s interests? Is it unreasonable to expect that said person might curb his sense of entitlement for a couple days, in celebration of Thanksgiving?

Alas, two days without complaining about trivial nonsense was, apparently, an unreasonable request. And so, the president had no choice but tweet about how LaVar Ball has yet to thank him for single-handedly freeing his son — along with two other UCLA basketball players — from a Chinese prison.

Previously, upon discovering that Ball was not a fan of his presidency, Trump tweeted that he should have left all three of the American basketball players to rot in the prison of a foreign, authoritarian regime. What’s the point of helping your constituents if you can’t even appreciate the congrats?

Anyhow, for some reason, tweeting about how LaVar Ball reminds him of Don King reminded the president of ungrateful NFL players. Over the past two seasons, some African-American football players have taken to kneeling during the national anthem, a gesture intended to remind spectators of the need to reform America’s discriminatory systems of policing and criminal justice. This has caused much consternation among those who believe that black athletes should be grateful that (white) America allowed them to ascend to the top of our nation’s most ruthless meritocracy (after expropriating untold wealth from their ancestors, locking their older relatives out of wealth creation through overtly discriminatory housing policies, etc., etc. …)  — including, of course, the president. In response, the NFL is reportedly considering reverting back to the pre-2009 policy of playing the national anthem while players are still in the locker room.

Trump, for one, finds this most unsatisfactory. It isn’t enough for black players to be denied the opportunity to protest racial inequality in front of the massive audience their talents attract — they must also be forced to affirm their uncomplicated pride in the United States, every working Sunday, under penalty of unemployment.

In other news, Trump’s Justice Department is refusing to provide guidance to police departments that are actively looking for help in combating discriminatory practices and preventing the use of excessive force. The administration argues that such efforts to combat the routine violation of nonwhite people’s constitutional rights are impediments to enforcing “the rule of law.”

This Thanksgiving, Trump Wants Black Athletes to Be Thankful