The phenomenon surrounding Colin Kaepernick is one we’ve seen before: a protest movement or an individual emerges and challenges a form of injustice or government corruption, and they’re smeared as being “anti-American” or “against the troops,” etc.
According to one of the most cited scholars in American history, Noam Chomsky, calling someone anti-American is a familiar tactic of totalitarian governments when they want to silence individuals who are challenging their policies.
“You might take a look at that word ‘Americanism,’ it’s an unusual term, it’s the kind of term that you only find in totalitarian societies as far as I know, So like in the Soviet Union and anti-Sovietism was considered the gravest of all crimes,” Chomsky said in the undated audio.
“…and the Brazilian generals had some concept like that anti-Brazilian, but try, say, publishing a book on anti-Italianism and see what happens in the streets of Rome or Milan. People won’t even bother laughing, it’s a ludicrous idea.”
“As far as I know, the United States is the only free society that has such a concept,” Chomsky continued.
“Americanism and anti-Americanism and un-Americanism and so on … these are concepts which go along with harmony and getting rid of those outsiders and all that kind of stuff. Another part is simply to induce hatred and fear among people.”
Listen to his remarks in the video below, first posted by Alternet: