In what seems to be an ongoing quest to not get booed at a major sporting event, Donald Trump will head down to Tuscaloosa, Ala., on Saturday to watch the Crimson Tide face off against its SEC rival and the current top-ranked college football program in the country, Louisiana State University.
Shortly after Trump’s trip down to Bryant-Denny stadium was reported, Alabama’s Student Government Association warned students, “any organizations that engage in disruptive behavior during the game will be removed from block seating instantly for the remainder of the season.” The warning, which was included in a letter from Vice President of Student Affairs Jason Rothfarb, provoked an instant backlash. As Alabama.com reports, some students pointed out that no such warnings against disruptions had been issued before.
Rothfarb later clarified his message on social media, writing that “By disruptive behavior, we are asking students to be respectful to all students and staff and avoid altercations.”
“My email has nothing do with anyone’s First Amendment rights and I am sorry for any confusion. Please express yourself and especially your pride for the Tide,” he added, according to Alabama.com.
Anyone assuming Tuscaloosa will be friendly territory should consider that Alabama’s campus—like many other college campuses across the country—is a blue dot in the middle of a red state. Our resident Alabama correspondent Michael Harriot predicted in the Root’s Slack, succinctly: “They’re going to boo him in Alabama, too,” along with a 2016 election map showing 69 percent of the ‘Bama precinct going for Hillary Clinton, versus 27 percent for Trump. In case you have the memory of a gnat (or had the good fortune to be offline the last few weeks), Trump was previously booed in Washington, D.C., during Game 5 of the World Series, and at a recent UFC match in Madison Square Garden.
I hope to the college football gods that the good folks in Tuscaloosa boo him, and not just because Trump is trash, but because booing is the sweetest and pettiest of American traditions. And from what I know about Alabama football, those assholes love pettiness and tradition. The City of Brotherly Love—where our country’s constitution was ratified—is filled with the booing-est sports fans in the country. If Santa isn’t safe, why should Trump be? The Apollo Theater, that Harlem landmark of black excellence, is famous for amplifying world-shifting performers like Jimi Hendrix, Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder and the Jackson Five—but it’s also famous for its critical and unforgiving crowd. Legends are made at the Apollo precisely because mediocrity is booed—and ushered quickly off the stage.
Look, last I checked, nearly half of all Americans want to impeach the motherfucker. But don’t boo him because it’s popular, Alabama, boo him because it’s your sacred, patriotic duty to do so.