Anyone worried that the ongoing debate between President Donald Trump and NFL over those protesting by kneeling during the national anthem would go away anytime soon can relax. The President continued to hammer away at this story with a “Great Anger” mini-tweetstorm this morning, and CNN’s New Day again showed great guest-booking prescience by having on noted African-American thought leader Dr. Michael Eric Dyson and Republican operative Ed Martin to debate the issue.
For the most part, this discussion followed the very similar pattern that some see as a successful political wedge issue. Two sides were talking past one another – Martin taking the “disrespecting the flag is never acceptable” and wildly unpopular in the midwest (he is from Missouri), while Dyson pointed out that Dr. Martin Luther King’s civil rights movement was also initially unpopular with wide segments of our country.
But it was when Martin attempted to pivot to giving President Trump credit for this divisive national debate that raised some eyebrows. “Instead of having a debate on something else right now we’re talking about whether African-Americans have been abused by the police,” adding “Isn’t there some way that you guys should say hey, wow, Trump has led us into a national conversation?”
Mr. Martin believes that Donald Trump deserves credit for bringing attention to an issue that he has been remarkably derisive of? No, Trump deserves no credit for bringing this national dialogue to the forefront. If it were up to him, no players would ever kneel during the national anthem, which means that we wouldn’t be having this discussion right now.
Watch the clip above, via CNN.
–image via screen capture–
This is an opinion piece. The views expressed in this article are those of just the author.