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Why I Will Never Kneel

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.
AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File

We are constantly told that our society is divided into two camps: the “good” and the “bad.” Under the faceless umbrella of progressivism, a judgement of your moral character is proclaimed based upon your willingness to comply with the latest demands of our moral arbiters: the radical left. These seem simple enough: the use of a hashtag, the alteration of a social media profile picture, or seemingly innocuous physical actions such as “taking a knee.” By accepting their rules of decency, you are able to evade their contempt. Their only stipulation is that you join their pyramid scheme of “enforced tolerance” by helping them unearth new ideological “converts.”


Currently, the only way you can prove your non-racism is to comply with every demand of the Black Lives Matter movement. This includes adhering to every one of their ideological and physical requests. Those who fail or refuse are publicly scorned and shamed into compliance. Those who comply are applauded and held as shining examples for others, such as Justin Trudeau, LA Mayor Eric Garcetti, or even some members of the National Guard.

While many of these individuals are well within their rights to behave as they see fit, it is an act of utter moral corruption that refusal to comply with these demands is seen as indisputable proof of both individual racism and systemic racism. In a civilization built upon the unique and revolutionary notion of presumed innocence, we now find ourselves living in a society that assumes that the lack of specific and subjective evidence of innocence is incontrovertible and objective evidence of guilt.

What makes matters worse is that vague and general points of unanimous agreement are used to support specific and contentious policies. The vast majority of us agree that black lives matter, that the deaths of people like Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and George Floyd are wrong and tragic, and that police brutality (whether racially motivated or not) should be condemned and eradicated. Instead of using this foundation of unanimous agreement to support our common battle against bigotry and violence, disagreement over subsequent demands of the Black Lives Matter movement or the radical Left are falsely presented as proof that we do not agree that racism is deplorable.


By accepting the mathematical impossibility that true implies false, the radical “progressive” mob has hijacked the notion of racism as a club to “convince” its ideological opponents. Those who abhor racism but believe that the abolition of police departments would lead to the deaths of countless innocents are seen as racist. Those who abhor racism but do not agree that instances of racism stand as irrefutable evidence of deep seated systematic racism are seen as racist. Those who abhor racism but cite examples of hypocrisy regarding sporadic and inconsistent outrage towards violence are seen as racist.

This is why I will never kneel. I believe, like the vast majority of Americans, that racism is abhorrent. I believe that racists exist, and that any and all instances of racism should be condemned. Indeed, until my status of victimhood was revoked by the flawed ideology of intersectionality and the absurd notion that racism is related directly to power dynamics, I have personally experienced racism and bigotry relating to my Jewish faith. Unfortunately, as a “white hetrosexual male of privilege,” the fact that I despise racism and bigotry will be seen as irrelevant to those who wish to label me as racist.

The brutal fact is that “taking a knee” is not solely the universal acknowledgement of the existence and wickedness of racism or police brutality. After all, Colin Kaepernick started this movement while wearing socks depicting police officers as pigs. While some may view it generally, others view it as an acknowledgement of the racism which runs through the veins of the United States at every level, as an acknowledgment of the moral depravity of the entire law enforcement community, and an acknowledgment that we must tear down our society in order to achieve the left’s subjective goal of “justice.” 


Taking a knee is also one of many ways in which some choose to absolve themselves of the obscene notion of “white guilt.” Phrases like “white silence is violence” or “white silence is compliance” are not only racist, but are indicative of precisely the same cynical and subjective falsehoods underpinning “taking a knee.” In reality, “white silence” actually means “white non-compliance.” To remain silent in the face of racism is indeed wrong. However, to refuse to accept personal responsibility for the actions of others, or bow to the demands of a radical political movement who have monopolized the very subject of race, is not.

It is true that we are all part of the fight against racism. We must, and do, respect the history of racism, the existence of racism, and the impact of racism. We must, and do, call out and condemn racism when it occurs. However, to assume racist intent or bully people into silent compliance through fear and guilt based entirely on their race is, by definition, racist. To ask people to literally bend the knee to a fluid and radical array of political demands is to reject ideological freedom. Finally, to assume that ideological differences alone are evidence of racism is to reject the fundamental idea of American.

Exodus 20:5 states “Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them nor serve them for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me.” In this case, “them” does not refer to a person or persons, but an ideology, an ideology which is built on falsehood, guilt, and racism. How will we end racism with racism?


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