Jemele Hill: The Price of Being Socially Responsible
We need to protect Jemele Hill and her right to express all that she stands for. Whether or not you agree with her stance on our president or his supporters you cannot allow her to be a victim of capitalism. That sets a dangerous precedent for free speech and social responsibility.
The year is 2017 and we have a commander-in-chief who struggles to pick sides between modern-day civil rights activists and nazis. We have a criminal justice system that violates the very constitution that it swears to uphold, the communities it’s law enforcement divisions swear to protect and serve. We have a segment of our nation that wants to “take our country back.”
All of these things, looked at objectively, should be viewed as blemishes on the very fabric of what our society promises to be. If you were to view yourself as a passionate American, the type to love his country unconditionally, you’d be expected to not want to be associated with Nazis. You’d be expected to not stand idly by as factions of communities outwardly express their discomfort towards the systems that abuse the power given through your constitution, and paid for by your tax dollars. You’d be expected to denounce any talk of reverting this country back to the old days because of the pain and agony that so many people endured during those times.
Instead, we are at a time where a man who uses his biggest platform to voice his grievances against the injustices that harm our idea of what the More Perfect Union is, is viewed as a “distraction.” And all those who support him are viewed as "Anti-American."
Yesterday ESPN chose to suspend on-air talent Jemele Hill for her comments on Twitter regarding the power of the Cowboys’ corporate sponsors. This was after owner Jerry Jones stated that all those who “disrespected the flag” would not be allowed to play for his team. Don’t get it twisted, this is not a response from a company that is concerned with upholding the sanctity of doing what is right. This is the response of a company who has it’s own corporate sponsors and understands where it’s bread is buttered. To punish someone, a black woman (important bit of context), for using her personal platform to convey her thoughts on an issue that hits close to home -- you know, the killing of unarmed black people by law enforcement -- is not only un-American. It’s a shameless, gutless, spineless, and downright weak move by executives looking to remove themselves from the line of fire, even in the face of doing what is right.
It’s a sad day when The Free Market has a say in social responsibility. Apparently there’s a way to put a price tag on being a decent fucking human being. ESPN, Jerry Jones, Donald Trump and all their supporters just proved that.