honorentheos wrote:I don't disagree he puffed up and was staring him down. First ____ post I made, man. I don't care about his subsequent comments to post hoc explain what happened. Where I disagree is with it being anything other than a kid who puffed up and didn't back down because that's how some people react in those situations. The race stuff is mind reading. Equating his choice to wear a MAGA hat with choosing to wear intentional White Nationalist symbols or Confederate Flags as a symbol of white pride is also mind reading. Because some people take it that way doesn't demand a person who supports Trump is inherently racist and choosing to wear it on their forehead.
You're aware that people who wear Confederate flag hats more often than not will claim it has nothing to do with racial symbolism and not infrequently believe that, right? They'll tell you they're just celebrating Southern heritage. Some say that cynically, but there are many people who genuinely think that. The counterargument is that it historically has been used as a symbol of racial supremacy, has its origins in that, and is used by white supremacists for that reason. You might not be a white supremacist, but you're wearing their colors, in other words. MAGA gear is very similar in that regard. It carries overt racial overtones even when people who wear it don't necessarily see it that way. You don't know if any person wearing it is a bigot, but they're wearing their colors. Because it's part of a large, active political movement, it might be easy to lose sight of that fact. Assuming the US doesn't devolve into a series of Donald Trump's as President, give it 15 years and the comparison will seem obvious in retrospect to you.
That's missing the point, though. If you ever find yourself in a situation where you're puffing up against a Native American while your peers engaging in overt racial taunting of him, and the video of it goes viral, you probably should mea culpa that one. Even if he was accidentally participating in a hate flash mob while just trying to be an ordinary dick, that's the sort of thing you say "my bad" to and try to show some contrition over. Yes, these teens were being idiots. Yes, they might not all be white nationalists or whatever. Yes, their upbringing probably helps explain why they were behaving the way they were. This doesn't excuse it in the way you seem to think it does. It's still a bad thing to do and it's not overreacting to point that out.