Much has been made of the fact that the man leading the US delegation at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea is not, um… quite representative of all of our athletes. Of course, anyone appointed by Donald Trump to typify America to the world was bound to be some kind of asshole one way or the other.
But after the AP reported that America’s emissary in Pyeongchang was being rather disrespectful, Connecticut Senator Chris Murphy saw something in Vice President Mike Pence’s behavior at the Olympics that looked very familiar to him. He took to Twitter with his observation:
Why does Pence hate the opening ceremonies? Oh wait…he’s a using ceremony at a sporting event to protest something else. Where have I seen that before? https://t.co/B9sTboKVa9
— Chris Murphy (@ChrisMurphyCT) February 10, 2018
Murphy was, of course, slyly commenting on the fact that Mike Pence walked out of an Indianapolis Colts game during the 2017 season when a player chose to take a knee in opposition to police brutality — a protest which happens during the “opening ceremony” of a football game, but doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with the ceremony itself.
But that’s the hypocrisy of the entire Trump administration: To do every single thing that they criticize others for and never see — or care — how idiotic it makes them look.
And with the NFL, Trump and Pence simply refused to acknowledge what players were actually protesting, and instead painted it as a protest against the actual ceremony — the national anthem being sung — that was taking place as they protested.
What’s more, according to the AP report, Pence didn’t stand for any other nations’ flags or anthems, which is not only disrespectful, but childish. As it turned out, Pence was seated very near to the sister of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Un, and even she threw some shade at him for acting like a little boy:
Kim Jong Un’s sister with deadly side-eye at Pence. pic.twitter.com/I0TTX1zI2L
— Philip Bump (@pbump) February 10, 2018
In a Games where North and South Korea are, at least for the few short weeks we have the Olympics, cooperating in a spirit of goodwill and partnership, it would do the world good to stand and recognize the effort.
That should have started with the man leading the US delegation.
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