Megan Rapinoe showed her understanding of U.S. history is lacking during a political rant Wednesday.
The U.S. women’s soccer star, who is protesting the national anthem during the World Cup as an “F you” to President Donald Trump and his administration, was asked what she thinks about those who say she is anti-American.
“I think I’m particularly and uniquely and very deeply American,” Rapinoe responded. “If we want to talk about the ideals that we stand for, the song and the anthem, and what we were founded on. I think I’m extremely American.
“I think, for the detractors, I would have them look hard into what I’m actually saying and the actions that I’m doing. … I think that I stand for honesty and for truth and for wanting to have a conversation.”
Rapinoe went on to say she thinks the United States is a great, although flawed, country and acknowledged she is fortunate to play for the national team as it is an opportunity she might not have elsewhere.
“I think that this country was founded on a lot of great ideals, but it was also founded on slavery,” she said. “And I think we just need to be really honest about that and be really open in talking about that so we can reconcile that and hopefully move forward and make this country better for everyone.”
“I think that I’m particularly and uniquely and very deeply American.”
I asked Megan Rapinoe what she thinks about some people calling her anti-American. Here’s her response:
— Alicia Rose DelGallo (@OSAliciaD) July 3, 2019
While it is certainly good that Rapinoe has some appreciation for the country in which she lives, there were several issues with her comments, including one big inaccuracy.
The United States wasn’t “founded on slavery.”
It’s true that the nation was born during a time when slavery was practiced, but the same is true of almost every country on the planet.
Humans have been enslaved for most of the world’s history, including the 18th century, when Americans — unhappy paying taxes and being ruled by a British government that did not give them any representation — fought and won the Revolutionary War.
Their Declaration of Independence spelled out the principles on which the nation was founded: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
While it took many years for those rights to be secured for all Americans, including those who were brought here as slaves, it’s false to say the nation was “founded on slavery.” In fact, the nation’s founding principles are the reason slavery was abolished and those rights were extended to all Americans.
Another dubious point from Rapinoe’s remarks is her belief that being a political leftist who is protesting on the World Cup stage makes her “uniquely and very deeply American.”
Rapinoe certainly has the right to use her platform to criticize the nation and its leaders, but that doesn’t make her any more American than anyone else. It does make her divisive, but she is not gaining any special America points by doing it.
She refuses to sing and put her hand over her heart during the national anthem. She knelt for it, in solidarity with Colin Kaepernick, as a member of the Seattle Reign in 2016. She said this year she is “not going to the “f—ing White House.”
Although her girlfriend, former WNBA standout Sue Bird, claimed Rapinoe is “unfazed” by Trump’s tweets about her, Bird took time out of her day to pen an article for The Player’s Tribune titled, “So the President F—ing Hates My Girlfriend.” Rapinoe sure seems to care about what the president had to say.
While she said she won’t visit the Trump White House following the World Cup — Trump invited the entire team, win or lose — Rapinoe said she would meet with democratic socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York.
Consider it done @AOC ?
— Megan Rapinoe (@mPinoe) June 29, 2019
That should give one an idea of where Rapinoe stands in terms of American values.
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