White men of a certain age just keep making the same, predictable mistakes and facing the same, entirely avoidable consequences. I’m pretty sure the “Congratulations, you played yourself,” meme exists entirely for men like Seth Jahn, who lost his spot in the U.S. Soccer Federation’s athletes council after giving a speech criticizing those who kneel against police brutality.
According to ABC News, the council had gathered to finalize a vote that would repeal Policy 604-1, which effectively banned U.S. soccer players from taking a knee to protest police brutality and systemic racism. The organization initially voted to repeal the ban last June, and on Saturday, the organization reaffirmed that vote with 71.34 percent voting in favor of repeal.
You think Seth Jahn was going to let that vote happen without saying something? Well then you don’t know Seth Jahn. Because let’s be real, none of us knew who Seth Jahn was before this article.
“I’m sure I’m going to ruffle some feathers with what I’m about to say, especially given the athletes council that I’m on, but given the evolution of our quote unquote, progressive culture where everything offends everybody, those willing to take a knee for our anthem don’t care about defending half of our country and when they do so, then I don’t have too much concern in also exercising my First Amendment right,” Jahn said
For someone who talks about everything offending everyone, he sure seems awfully pressed about folks just...taking a knee. Jahn didn’t leave it there, because of course he didn’t.
“I keep hearing how our country was founded on the backs of slaves, even though approximately only 8% of the entire population even owned slaves,” he continued. “Every race in the history of mankind has been enslaved by another demographic at some point in time. Blacks have been enslaved. Hispanics have been enslaved. Asians most recently in our country in the freaking 20th century, have been enslaved. Natives have been enslaved. Whites have been enslaved. Shoot, I lived in Africa for 2 1/2 years where I could purchase people, slaves, between the price of $300 and $800 per person, per head depending on their age, health and physicality.”
Well, I don’t know if Jahn knew this but it’s not like things aren’t exactly hunky dory in those communities either. There’s been an ongoing surge in anti-Asian hate crimes, Natives routinely have their land plundered in the name of capitalism, and Spanish-speaking communities are routinely vilified and blamed for the nation’s problems by the very news outlets and pundits I’m going to assume Jahn gets his talking points from. I guess what I’m asking here is, what’s his fucking point with this? It’s not like he stands in solidarity with any of those communities.
Also, it’s big fucking weird to casually know the price of a slave in Africa, if that’s even a real thing. Now I have questions about what exactly this man was doing while he was in Africa.
“Where were the social justice warriors and the news journalists there to bring their ruminations to these real atrocities? And yet in all of history, only one country has fought to abolish slavery, the United States of America, where nearly 400,000 men died to fight for the abolishment of slavery underneath the same stars and bars that our athletes take a knee for. Their sacrifice is tainted with every knee that touches the ground,” Jahn continued.
Jahn, you poor child, you’re only looking at half the picture here. Yes, nearly 400,000 Union soldiers died in the Civil War. You know who killed them though? Their own countrymen, the Confederacy to be exact (editor’s note: more than 600,000 Americans died in the Civil War). You know what this country did for those who betrayed their country and killed in the name of subjugation? They built monuments to them. Named schools after them. Hell, some states chose to put statues of Confederate leaders to represent them in the U.S. Capitol.
If you really want to talk about that sacrifice being tainted, how about we start there? But we all know that’s not what any of this is about. Honestly, dude should just say he doesn’t like Black people and be done with it. He’s already saying the quiet part out loud, he could at least be honest with everyone.
Clearly, Jahn’s little speech had no effect as the council heard what he had to say and voted in favor of repeal anyway. The council issued a statement on Sunday announcing Jahn had been removed from the council for violating “the prohibited conduct’s policy section on harassment, which prohibits racial or other harassment based upon a person’s protected status (race), including any verbal act in which race is used or implied in a manner which would make a reasonable person uncomfortable.”
Don’t be surprised if Jahn pulls up at CPAC, the Joe Rogan podcast, or any other clown convention decrying the dangers of “cancel culture.” He knew the rules and instead of following his own advice and keeping his views outside of soccer, he instead decided to lose his spot on the council.
So congratulations, Seth Jahn, you played yourself.