‘Make America Great Again’ Hats: Oddly Offensive to Those Who Value Personal Liberty
'The bravest people in the face of any oppression are those who speak freely against it, despite the consequences,' says the author of this op-ed
It is hard to understand, beyond the fact that it was coined as a campaign phrase by a man the Left reflexively hates, how the term Make America Great Again can be so offensive to so many.
To dissect the issue, we have to go back to when America was initially great — and that was at its founding, when a war was fought against a global power that suppressed the rights and liberties of the American colonists.
The battle for liberty included the understanding that people should be free to speak, believe, assemble, protest, partake and basically express who and what they were without fear of imprisonment or death — the fates that many patriots faced when fighting against that tyranny.
The first 10 amendments to the Constitution were enumerated specifically because they had been denied while the British ruled this new, great America. The Founding Fathers would ensure those liberties were woven into the fabric of this new, great country from the beginning; but a third of the nation would be loyal to the oppressive crown while working to defeat the patriots who were willing to die for that freedom.
These opponents of personal liberty have given birth to a progeny who today have the same loyalties to belief systems that would deny personal liberties.
To trace the times when America has been great in the past is to find a segment of society that has opposed that greatness at every turn, from the original loyalists to the Democrat Party that split the nation in order to keep slavery alive. A war was fought and won by the abolitionist Republican Party, making America great again as they passed the 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments, which Democrats rejected.
Those amendments proposed and passed by the newly formed Republican Party ended slavery, made these liberated individuals full citizens with all rights, and gave them the right to vote. The Democrats took that right away through Jim Crow laws and the purposeful misinterpretation of the 14th Amendment and a move to deny liberated slaves the right to vote.
America was made great again when Republicans pushed for equality for women and their right to vote as the same oppressive Democrats employed their same bully tactics and fought that move the same way they fought to keep slavery alive. America was made great again when a Republican president defied all the southern Democrat governors who were standing in the school house doors, preventing blacks from the same educational opportunities as whites.
America was made great again when we joined a world war to prevent the spread of the same oppressive, fascist, dehumanizing mentality that is today raising its head to marginalize anyone who disagrees with them or opposes their belief systems or philosophies … or wears a MAGA hat.
America was made great again when the Republicans passed the Civil Rights Act that righted a 100-year wrong against blacks who had constitutional guarantees of equality and freedom that were ignored and overturned by the Democrat Party. The fact that a Democrat president signed it did not erase over 150 years of abject racism by that party. And the Democrats today who demand the destruction of the rebel flag and the tearing down of Confederate statues don’t even understand that they belong to them and their party and their history. That is their battle flag. The battle flag of liberty is the Stars and Stripes that they fought against in order to keep slavery alive.
America was great again when the final nail of freedom was put in the coffin of segregation by the Republicans who refused to allow the southern Democrats to continue to marginalize U.S. citizens because of the color of their skin.
It was not until years later that a man who had been a member of the KKK was still referred to as the “conscience of the Senate” by his fellow Democrats, including Hillary Clinton — who called Sen. Robert Byrd (D-W.V.) her mentor.
America was made great again when Ronald Reagan defeated Jimmy Carter in 1980 and staved off an economic disaster that had already begun enveloping the nation in malaise and poverty. Double-digit inflation, unemployment and interest rates were slowed and reversed in just two years by the pro-economic growth of this Republican president, who rejected the concept and devastation of socialism and communism that was creeping into society.
When Donald Trump coined the phrase Make America Great Again, it was because he knew historically that America had been great before an administration came into power, one that used every tool available to undermine the liberties and freedoms of its people.
Trump’s predecessor weaponized the Department of Justice, the IRS, and the attorney general’s office until scandals like “Fast and Furious” that released hundreds of assault weapons into society were seen as commonplace. Seeing pallets of cash being shipped to terrorist regimes after giving them carte blanche in developing nuclear weapons to be used against us became normal behavior for that administration. Swapping a known traitor for the release of five dangerous terrorists was done by someone who clearly had not read “The Art of the Deal.”
Unless, of course, he knew exactly what he was doing — giving a black eye to the military while empowering our enemies to destroy us.
America was made “ungreat” by an administration that gave new life to the evil specter of racism, which was slowly dying a natural death because society had determined that anyone with that mentality was a pariah. Such people were becoming totally irrelevant until the moniker was quickly applied by all Democrats to anyone who would dare oppose them on any issue.
Now, the term is basically irrelevant when the very party that liberated the slaves and has traditionally supported equal rights is called racist by the party that kept racism alive.
When teenagers are bullied by adults for wearing a hat that symbolizes their choice of political philosophies, it is clear the real bullies are those who reject debate and honest discussion.
The Democrats claim to oppose bullying while they employ that tactic at every turn. Today bullying, like racism, is a term reserved for anyone who disagrees with a Democrat.
When teenagers are bullied by adults for speaking their minds and wearing a hat that symbolizes their choice of political philosophies, it is clear the real bullies are those who reject debate and honest discussion. They are the ones slowly moving toward irrelevance, while their members look on in horror at the abuse of kids by unhinged adults.
The Make America Great Again hats are almost prophetic as a declaration by those who don’t want to see another divided nation over oppressive ideas, but ironically do see it creeping in the minute they don this hat. The hat suggests positive movement to eradicate bullying, oppression, marginalization and dehumanization — which is exactly what happens to anyone who wears the MAGA hat, thus fulfilling that prophecy.
The bravest people in the face of any oppression are those who speak freely against it, despite the consequences. That is what the Founders did to the British by forming a nation that was birthed with the idea of personal freedom, liberty, and God-given rights and responsibilities.
The MAGA hat is the new tricorner hat of the revolutionaries who gave their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honors to preserve the rights of teenagers everywhere to express their views without fear of attack — while wearing the hat of their choice.
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Nina May is a writer, producer and director, and currently the showrunner on “Daily Bread,” a faith-based post-apocalyptic drama.