Once Upon a Time in America

Posted on October 17, 2019 by Robert Ringer


Given America’s moral decline, the NBA’s hypocritical groveling to China should come as no surprise.  The China brouhaha comes on the heels of the NFL’s weak-kneed response to the Colin Kaepernick protests, which resulted in a three-year nightmare for the NFL.

Given the backlash from NFL fans, you would have thought the NBA would know better than to make a similar mistake.  But like all liberal hypocrites, Adam Silver and his NBA owner-bosses are so blinded by their quest for evermore billions that they don’t have time to reflect on a pedantic subject like morality.

As Fox Sports 1 analyst Jason Whitlock explained on “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” the bottom line is that Nike controls the NBA, and Nike’s number-one market is China.  Which means that NBA owners, coaches, and players are absolutely forbidden from criticizing the world’s largest communist country.  One thing you can always count on with professional sports is that money trumps virtue every time.

It’s the tired old story of liberals casting themselves as social-justice warriors, while at the same time being selective about which oppressed peoples they choose to support.  If liberals don’t support Hong Kong protesters who are fighting against government oppression while waving American flags, who in the hell do they support?

Oh, that’s right, transgenders in North Carolina.  What with all the new synthetic genders being invented by the Radical Left, you have to keep those bathrooms open to all, perverts and peeping Toms be damned.

We expect such hypocrisy from NBA owners, but you would think players and coaches would want to set an example for their adoring fans — especially kids.  Not that all the players are immoral.  Some are just morons, so I guess they have an excuse.  How can you fault a moron?

Two glaring examples of this are LeBron James and Steve Kerr.  In all honesty, I think LeBron is pretty much ignored when he says something stupid, because people kind of expect it of him.  Having very little education and no real-life experience, he lives in a bubble that insulates him from the real world.  Why should you read or study facts when no one challenges your words?

Unfortunately, this kind of insulation brings about moronic, incoherent comments such as, “I tweeted out responses to people not understanding my knowledge and where it came from with my brain and learning from the situation.”  Huh?  Don’t laugh.  LeBron is a role model for millions of kids.

As to Steve Kerr, I guess it’s only fair to cut him the same amount of slack as LeBron, because he definitely sounded like a moron when he tried to draw a moral equivalence between China’s human rights violations and a hypothetical mass shooting at a Walmart.  The comparison was not only ludicrous, it was a non sequitur.  How do you reason with someone who says that free-speech protestors being clubbed over the head by police is nothing more than “a bizarre situation?”

Psst, Steve:  Mass shootings are individual acts of violence that account for a fraction of 1 percent of gun deaths in America.  They are carried out by deranged individuals.  In China, human rights violations are official government policy carried out against its own citizens on a daily basis.

Let’s face it, the NBA and the NFL have become thugball leagues.  As evidenced by their absurd hairstyles, players in both leagues display a middle-finger mentality towards fans and the public in general.  If owners possessed moral courage, they would make it mandatory that players be well groomed.

Joe Namath tells the story of how, when he arrived on the scene at the University of Alabama in 1962, legendary coach Bear Bryant called him aside and told him that if he wanted to play for Alabama, he was going to have to cut his hair so it didn’t show below his helmet.  As Namath tells the story, he immediately responded with, “Yes, sir!” and that evening cut his hair.

But that was another time and another place.  Today, Bear Bryant probably would have been charged with a civil rights violation.  How dare a coach tell a player how to wear his hair or conduct himself?

As to the NFL, it’s a business, and considering the multi-million-dollar salaries it pays its players, it has every right to set standards regarding grooming, dress, and conduct.  So, why doesn’t it do so?  The answer, of course, is for the same reason the NBA apologizes to China for a tweet in support of the Hong Kong protesters:  The owners pander to anyone whose displeasure with them poses a threat to their profits.

But once upon a time in America, things were much different than they are today.  To be sure, the United States has never been perfect.  From the Salem Witch trials to today’s political witch hunts, from slavery to the internment of Japanese Americans, from the disenfranchisement of Native Americans to today’s homeless crisis, the United States has endured its share of black marks.

Yet, for all its flaws, America has been a beacon of hope for people throughout the world.  In the early 17th century, John Winthrop, the first governor of Massachusetts Bay Colony, referred to America as “a city upon a hill,” and more than 350 years later, Ronald Reagan, in his 1989 farewell address, elevated that description to “a shining city upon a hill.”

Through the centuries, the shining city upon a hill defeated all enemies — the British, the Spanish, the Japanese, and the Germans — and kept right on shining.  But all the while, anti-liberty egalitarians from within relentlessly worked to transform America into a less free, anti-capitalist nation where an all-powerful central government would have the power to grant or deny rights to its citizens.

Nevertheless, for nearly 200 years the enemies from within failed to gain a foothold solid enough to seriously threaten the foundations of the country the Founding Fathers created.  But today, uncertainty has fallen over the land.  There is a sense of doom, a feeling that American culture is being lost.  Longstanding certitudes are rapidly disappearing, as moral vandals shred not only the Constitution, but the fabric of Judeo-Christian ethics.

The challenge we face today is not China, or Russia, or ISIS.  As Attorney General William Barr put it in a speech to Notre Dame law students:

The challenge we face is precisely what the Founding Fathers foresaw would be the supreme test of a free society.  They never thought that the main danger to the republic would come from an external foe.  The question was whether the citizens in such a free society could maintain the moral discipline and virtue necessary for the survival of free institutions.

As I explained in my article “From Marx to Woodstock to Insanity,” over the past 50 years the Radical Left has succeeded in gaining control of America’s culture by planting Marxists in those institutions — schools and universities, churches, government, and all segments of entertainment and sports.  Is it any wonder, then, that America has been decaying in a cesspool of relativism for decades?

The biggest challenge we face today is from the Radical Left that is destroying our morals and our values.  If we do not fight back and defeat this uncivilized menace, it is only a matter of time until the morals and values that made America that shining city upon a hill will become extinct.  China, Russia, ISIS, and any other external enemy can be handled with ease if we win the culture war against the enemy from within.

Robert Ringer

Robert Ringer is an American icon whose unique insights into life have helped millions of readers worldwide. He is also the author of two New York Times #1 bestselling books, both of which have been listed by The New York Times among the 15 best-selling motivational books of all time.