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Opinion: It’s time we all call ourselves Americans
San Francisco 49ers players, from left, Eli Harold, Colin Kaepernick and Eric Reid kneel during the national anthem before an NFL game Oct. 2, 2016 in Santa Clara, California. (Marcio Jose Sanchez) - photo by Associated Press

I just finished reading the Saturday, May 30, 2020, issue of The Times and was appalled to see the cartoon by Andy Marlette of Colin Kaepernick kneeling in his football uniform next to the white officer kneeling on the neck of George Floyd with the caption “Which act of taking a knee will white Americans decry as an offensive violation of patriotic values and constitutional rights?”

If this is what The Times means about “fostering community conversation,” your paper has failed miserably. 

The cartoon shows a black man kneeling during the national anthem, which of course must suggest, using the cartoonist’s inept logic, that all black people show disrespect to the flag.

On the other side, using the same logic, a white policeman kneeling on the neck of a black man again proposes that all white cops and white people in general must be racist. How totally absurd! 

It appears as if we cannot view a crime as a crime without pulling out the race card. Because we live in a free society (at least for the moment), every citizen has the right to speak his mind and make decisions, idiotic as some may be, but when these actions break the law, consequences must follow.

The policeman committed a heinous crime for which he, not white people, should be held accountable. Conversely, Colin Kaepernick’s lack of patriotism should not cast an unfavorable light on black people.

I hope to see the day that all Americans will let the law of the land run its course as opposed to looting and rioting under the guise of “peaceful protest.” There is absolutely no excuse for violence and destruction, ever! If we desire to be a unified society, then perhaps the time is right to stop calling ourselves white Americans, Afro-Americans, Asian-Americans, Hispanic-Americans, etc., and just refer to ourselves as Americans. If we hope to have an inclusive society, then those aspects that separate us need to be discarded.

John Broman


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