“Ungrateful” Rhetoric

“The Colonization Society . . . has held out the idea, that a colored man, however he may strive to make himself intelligent, virtuous and useful, can never enjoy the privileges of a citizen of the United States, but must ever remain a degraded and oppressed being” (214).

This quote from Pastor Peter Williams’ letter really stood out to me, particularly with the NFL protests that took place over the weekend. Despite Williams raised status as a slave because of his church involvement, it is refreshing to read a source in which he is painfully aware of the pressures put on slaves to comply with their masters. The NFL protests, demonstrated during the National Anthem by players, coaches, and owners this weekend, were in response to police brutality against black people. During the National Anthem, participating protesters took a knee, locked arms, or even stayed back in the locker room for its entirety. While these demonstrations have been overwhelmingly peaceful, Trump, along with other white conservatives, have taken to social media/the press calling NFL participants “sons of bitches” and “ungrateful.” The idea presented in the quote above by Williams eerily parallels the reaction against protesters by political officials and Americans.

I have included two clips from last night’s The Daily Show with Trevor Noah which discusses the NFL protests:



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