Boo Radley Takes A Knee

Justin Timberlake won’t take a knee. Tom Brady won’t take a knee. Whoever the hotshot is from the team going up against Tom Brady’s team won’t take a knee. They don’t have the DNA of Boo Radley.

Boo Radley is the unlikely hero of “To Kill A Mockingbird.” The outsider who lives reclusively in an old house on the outskirts of town. The children fear him. The adults ridicule him. The town has all but locked him away.

He’s there but he’s not there.

When we don’t understand someone, this is our favorite trick: strip them of their dignity, don’t even let them sit on the sidelines in a uniform on the bench, take away their team.

He’s there but he’s not there.

We did it to Cassius Clay. We stole his prime when he changed his name to Muhammad Ali and refused to fight in the Vietnam War. We did it to Dave Chappelle. We stole his peace of mind by calling him a crackhead when he walked away from a hit show and disappeared from show business for 12 years. We did it to Hillary Clinton. We stole her presidency with the Electoral College and systemic misogyny when she had the audacity to run for president while having a vagina. We did it to Colin Kaepernick. We stole his livelihood when he took a knee during the National Anthem and gave the bully pulpit to a racist president who took it as an opportunity to make the cause of racism an applause line at the State of the Union.

I have not watched a single game all season.

And yet, I’ll be watching the Superbowl, rooting for the halftime show to do something daring but knowing Justin Timberlake has been so beaten down for what happened between him and Janet Jackson’s nipple that his main goal is to not make news.

Justin Timberlake has an undiagnosed case of Acute Celebrity Stockholm Syndrome. He’s there but he’s not there.  Unlike Boo Radley, who despite being treated like he’s not there, had the heart to know when it was time to make an appearance.

And save the day.

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