President Donald J. Trump welcomes Army Black Knights football player James Gibson to deliver remarks at the Commander-in- Chief’s Trophy presentation to the United States Military Academy football team Monday, May 6, 2019, in the Rose Garden of the White House. (Official White House Photo by Andrea Hanks)
Officials at the U.S. Military Academy are conducting an investigation into the possible employment of a white supremacist or white power symbol during Saturday’s Trump-attended Army-Navy football game.
On Saturday night, some made the accusation, posting videos of dudes making the “okay” sign for the camera:
As an American,
As a Navy Dad,
As a decent human being…
…you hate to see racist West Point cadets emboldened by the presence of the Racist-inChief at an #ArmyNavyGame to throw up the "White Power" sign on national TV.
— BrooklynDad_Defiant! (@mmpadellan) December 14, 2019
For what it’s worth, when I was going up, guys would do that in order to make each other look. The idea was, whoever did got socked in the arm. It was a commonly-known game.
Is it still alive and well, or is the KKK “okay”?
As reported by USA Today, talk of the sinister sign “blossomed” online:
Questions erupted during the Army-Navy game in Philadelphia when students appeared to make the White Power hand symbol during a pregame broadcast.
Spokespersons from the U.S. Military Academy and the U.S. Naval Academy told USA Today Sports they have been made aware of the issue – which blossomed on social media as the game wore on – and the schools are looking into it.
#WhitePower and #WestPoint trended.
So many white people on here are calling me the N word, and other awful things.
I am a strong black Muslim woman. Nothing can bring me down. I will always speak up against racism. 😊 https://t.co/WOAXZU3x8Z
— Hamdia Ahmed (@hamdia_ahmed) December 15, 2019
Ahh, Eureka — from The Daily Wire:
There was strong pushback against the smear attempts, with many noting that the cadets were playing the “circle game.”
Sounds right to me. Someone’s gettin’ an arm-punch.
Here we go again. This time it’s @ByMikeBrehm of @usatodaysports trying to ruin the lives of cadets for playing the circle game, because in some alternate reality they just MUST be white supremacists. At some point someone’s gotta bring a defamation case against these lunatics. https://t.co/2Y8iaB1kVw
— Cliff Sims (@Cliff_Sims) December 15, 2019
Sports analyst Clay Travis thought the same:
Good lord. They were playing the circle game. America has gone insane. pic.twitter.com/jixG99ftmX
— Clay Travis (@ClayTravis) December 15, 2019
Nevertheless, here’s what the Wall Street Journal had to say Sunday morning:
West Point and Annapolis officials are trying to determine the motives of service academy students who flashed hand signs on national television Saturday that in certain contexts are associated with “white power.”
The hand sign appeared to be displayed both by West Point cadets and Annapolis midshipmen during a broadcast of the annual Army-Navy football game in Philadelphia, but U.S. Military Academy officials haven’t yet determined their intent, according to a West Point spokesman. A U.S. Naval Academy spokeswoman said the academy is also checking on the matter.
So two things: 1) It seems clear they were playing the game — they weren’t just holding up a symbol; they were outstretching their arms so as to put the circle in view, as guys will do when they’re playing. 2) Who says the “okay” sign means white supremacy? Where are people getting that information?
On the topic, I give you the Anti-Defamation League:
Since the early 1800s, the gesture increasingly became associated with the word “okay” and its abbreviation “ok.” The gesture is also important in the Hindu and Buddhist worlds, as well as in yoga, where it is known as mudra or vitarka mudra, a symbol of inner perfection. The “okay” hand gesture also forms part of the basis for a number of words or concepts in American Sign Language. It appears in many other contexts as well.
Now check this out:
In 2017, the “okay” hand gesture acquired a new and different significance thanks to a hoax by members of the website 4chan to falsely promote the gesture as a hate symbol, claiming that the gesture represented the letters “wp,” for “white power.” The “okay” gesture hoax was merely the latest in a series of similar 4chan hoaxes using various innocuous symbols; in each case, the hoaxers hoped that the media and liberals would overreact by condemning a common image as white supremacist.
In the case of the “okay” gesture, the hoax was so successful the symbol became a popular trolling tactic on the part of right-leaning individuals, who would often post photos to social media of themselves posing while making the “okay” gesture.
Ironically, some white supremacists themselves soon also participated in such trolling tactics, lending an actual credence to those who labeled the trolling gesture as racist in nature.
Does that strike you as a legitimization?
I’m gonna go with…what’s the word? Oh, yeah:
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