- Victor C. Bolles
In a recent interview with Oprah Winfrey on the topic of the kneeling protests by NFL players, New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady said that he had relationships with guys of “every color, race, belief” and that everyone needed to respect each other and to have empathy for each other. But he also emphasized that this is important on a diverse team “with guys trying to go in the same direction.”
As I have noted in the past, diversity works when there is a unity of purpose. On the New England Patriots that purpose is to win as many football games as possible and to go to the Super Bowl. But diversity for the New England Patriots does not mean quotas. Only the best players are recruited and hired for each position. Candidates are not sought out based on their race or ethnicity but on their proven football skills and ability.
Actually, the New England Patriots are not all that diverse. The 2017 roster of players was made up of 30 whites, 58 blacks and 1 Hispanic. I am actually guessing these ethnicities because the ethnicities are not listed on the roster because racial identity is irrelevant (except to progressives). A New England Patriots team that reflected American racial diversity would probably not be a very good team. There are no Asians on the team that I could see although Patrick Chung, a black Jamaican, has a Chinese sounding name and may be of mixed race (if you want to see a sport with a lot of Asians watch the LPGA tour).
But the point I want to make is not about diversity but about unity of purpose. All the diverse players on the New England Patriots team (as well as the other diverse players on other NFL teams) are unified in the goal of winning football games. Restricting the universe of potential teammates to one particular race would not help achieve that goal any more than requiring the team to hire someone because of their race when there were more skilled or experienced players available. The New England Patriots are the ultimate meritocracy (as far as football goes).
The practice of kneeling during the National Anthem was introduced by Colin Kaepernick to highlight his feelings on the state of racial injustice in America. It had nothing to do with winning football games. In doing so he undermined the team’s unity. If his black teammates did not join him did that mean that they lacked racial solidarity? If his white teammates did not join him did that mean that they were bigots? Kaepernick was attempting to place everyone who did not agree with him in a bad light.
Disrupting the unity of his team led the 49ers to a 2 and 14 season that year. Kaepernick became a free agent in 2017 but no other team stepped forward to sign him up. Many sports announcers attributed this to racism and bigoted reactions to his protest. But the real reason is that the disunity caused by his protests impairs a team’s ability to win games. No matter how great his football skills and abilities might be, they are far outweighed by his negative impact on team unity.
It is difficult to compare a truly meritocratic organization such as an NFL team with American society. America cannot fire unproductive citizens or trade them to other countries. And our diversity is our diversity and we are stuck with it. But our diversity in the past worked because all the diverse people coming to our country wanted to take part in America. To become Americans. To achieve the American Dream.
But diversity is now being used to uproot American culture. I am not saying that American culture shouldn’t change and grow. We still have a long way to go in achieving the goals and ideals of our American Founding Principles. But diversity is now being used to assert that all cultures are equal and that new immigrants or existing subcultures do not have to assimilate into American culture.
But just as a healthy person needs a varied diet, America needs immigration and diversity. Keep in mind also that a healthy diet does not consist of an excessive amount of any kind of food or food varieties that do not contribute to the health of the body. America needs immigration and diversity that will contribute to the health of the nation.
We need a reasonable immigration policy that meets the needs of the nation. It needs to address the current undocumented population, it needs to have a merit based visa program similar to Canada and other countries, it needs to have a compassionate refugee program and also temporary visa programs to supply temporary or seasonal workers as needed. What we don’t need is an open border that produces a culture-killing flood of immigrants such as is happening in Europe.
The chaos on our borders in being created by the progressive Kaepernicks of the left in the hopes that appreciative illegal immigrants will take advantage of weak voter ID laws to vote for progressive candidates. They are being aided in their efforts by President Trump’s merciless immigration enforcement tactics. The situation will only get worse if President Trump’s racist slurs against Mexicans propels Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, a left winger who hates America, into the presidency of Mexico.
Republicans still control both houses of Congress and have the opportunity to pass reasonable legislation on immigration. And President Trump would be wise to sign it, even if it didn’t contain funding for his wall. After November the Democrats and the progressives will be able to stall any attempt at reasonable legislation so that the chaos and tragedy on the border will continue indefinitely.