Protesting the national anthem and protesting America has become popularized and celebrated by left-wing figures in the last few years since Colin Kaepernick started the trend in the NFL to much ire. As the left continually shuns the idea of separating sports and politics because they see any avenue to push their progressive agenda as a good one, serious questions are being raised about what the left plans to do on the global stage of the 2020 Summer Olympics.
After two US gold medal winners staged dramatic podium protests against US President Donald Trump at the Pan American Games, the stage is being set for a mass display of protest against Trump for the 2020 Summer Games in Tokyo. The Pan American Games protest are being sold as a preview to the 2020 games and the potential of American athletes representing the United States to condemn Trump while pushing for far-left issues has the media very excited.
Fencer Race Imboden, 26, took a knee during the team’s medal ceremony and hammer thrower Gwen Berry raised her fist while the U.S. national anthem played. Imboden said in a tweet after the ceremony that he was protesting a number of issues, as well as President Trump.
“We must call for change. This week I am honored to represent Team USA at the Pan Am Games, taking home Gold and Bronze. My pride, however, has been cut short by the multiple shortcomings of the country I hold so dear to my heart. Racism, Gun Control, mistreatment of immigrants, …”
“And a president who spreads hate are at the top of a long list. I chose to sacrifice [sic] my moment today at the top of the podium to call attention to issues that I believe need to be addressed. I encourage others to please use your platforms for empowerment and change,” he said.
Berry, 30, told USA Today that she raised her fist because of “all of the injustices” in the U.S. and “a president who’s making it worse.”
“It’s too important to not say something,” Berry said. “Something has to be said. If nothing is said, nothing will be done, and nothing will be fixed, and nothing will be changed.”
The 2020 Summer Games will be the first Summer Games with Trump as President of the United States and with 2020 also being an election year, it is likely that athletics will use their platforms to protest the country against the wishes of the US Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC) who already have rules against political protests.
“Every athlete competing at the 2019 Pan American Games commits to terms of eligibility, including to refrain from demonstrations that are political in nature,” Jones said in a statement to ESPN.
Despite the USOPC objections, the media is giddy at the idea of a global Trump protest and are slowly encouraging the athlete to do so. The Washington Post with an op-ed entitled Athlete activism is growing and diversifying, just in time for the 2020 Olympics makes the case that this is the perfect time to show unity against Trump.
The 2020 Olympics will be defined from an American perspective by certain characters telling their stories, speaking their truths, standing up to criticism and emerging victorious whether you like them or not.
Rapinoe and her team will be back for an Olympic run. So will the outspoken WNBA players leading the U.S. women’s basketball team and a men’s basketball coaching staff featuring Gregg Popovich and Steve Kerr, who have refused to stay silent about gun violence while preparing for the World Cup.
There are so many others who will excel and give a human face to issues, and they are impossible to dismiss during the Olympics.
In the NBA, many stars have declined to play in the 2019 Pan American games and there is increasing pressure for them to either refuse to play in 2020 or use the games as a message against Trump. One thing is certain, it looks like we are heading towards a very divisive 2020 Games as patriotism becomes perverted into progressivism.