Liberals are loudly denouncing President Trump for his plans to insert himself into Fourth of July festivities in the nation's capital. He'll deliver a speech -- as if that is unique -- and provide tanks for the parade -- as if that's controversial. And so they compare Trump to Kim Jong Un.
Then there are others who are using this anniversary to take it in the opposite direction. Those same leftists are using the celebration of our nation to attack her. Their actions are deliberately designed to offend ... to grab everyone's attention ... to please the people who really can't stand the thought of American exceptionalism. This nation needs to be diminished. Why not do so on her birthday? Here's some evidence.
1. Nike announced it's scrapping an athletic shoe featuring the Betsy Ross flag because, apparently, former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick objected to it. The cable and broadcast networks jumped on this story -- and supported it. You read Nike's statement in disbelief. It claimed it pulled the flag shoe "based on concerns that it could unintentionally offend and detract from the nation's patriotic holiday."
Poppycock. Nike succumbed to leftist pressure for the worst possible reason: greed. When Nike signed up Kaepernick, the reaction was overwhelmingly negative, and Nike's stock plunged. But the radical left is united and resilient. It bought and bought and bought. Now sales are up. This only fuels that kind of marketing.
2. The New York Times Opinion section yanked at flag wavers by tweeting a video opinion piece with a caption reading, "The myth of America as the greatest nation on earth is at best outdated and at worst, wildly inaccurate. If you look at data, the U.S. is really just O.K."
The video declared America is certainly No. 1 in some things: "civilian gun ownership, mass shootings, TV watching, prescription drug abuse and prison population." And we're "almost number one in environmental damage, edged out by China." The narrator also claimed, "you can confuse America for a developing country," like Pakistan or Nigeria, because "how great America is really depends on how rich you are."
The video also showed a picture of President Trump as the narrator insisted, "while a bit of patriotism is great, jingoism is dangerous, especially when it's built on old or fake news." At this writing, the video has drawn almost 1.8 million views and more than 7,000 likes. It's a perfect match for The Times' liberal subscriber base.
This seemed designed for people to shoot back, as one did: "Millions of people are desperately trying to get into the US. If New York Times reporters don't appreciate our country, they should move out and make room for immigrants who do."
3. The city council of Charlottesville, North Carolina, voted on July 1 that the city "will no longer celebrate Thomas Jefferson's birthday as an official city holiday and instead will observe a day recognizing the emancipation of enslaved African-Americans," the Associated Press reported. They could mark both, of course, but Jefferson has to be pulled down off a pedestal, just as the council voted to remove Confederate monuments. These five unanimous liberals want to make the statement that Jefferson is embarrassing, and they seemingly timed the vote for maximum national publicity.
George Washington, you're next.
This decision might not seem as business-oriented as Nike's or The New York Times', but these liberals may believe that looking "woke" is politically correct and economically correct for this college town.
All this just underlines that being divisive can be very effective politics -- and business. But it also underlines that the left is totally disingenuous when it talks about tolerance and unity yet its actions betray the opposite. The Antifa group is fascist, and the "patriotic" protesters burn American flags ... even on our nation's birthday.
L. Brent Bozell III is the president of the Media Research Center. Tim Graham is director of media analysis at the Media Research Center and executive editor of the blog NewsBusters.org. To find out more about Brent Bozell III and Tim Graham, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.