It seems even football coaches aren’t safe from socio-political scrutiny. A photo of New England Patriots Coach Bill Belichick has been circulating around the Internet due to him sporting a sleeveless, green T-shirt emblazoned with stick-like figures—one, an American soldier; the other resembles a terrorist.
The doodle entails the soldier seemingly aiming his gun at the terrorist, who dropped his weapon due to an attack dog chomping down on his arm. More, the turban-topped stick figure’s eyes are X’d out, which is an animation’s way to convey a character’s dead. The shirt also has “Life is great” below the illustration.
First and foremost, the man was on vacation; he didn’t wear said T-shirt to a game in lieu of the traditional suit or knit shirt and khakis. Second, seemingly the only reason this is even an issue is he’s “somebody” in the sports industry. Regardless, Belichick fell prey to scrutiny—e.g., civil-right-activist Tariq Nasheed’s race-card-playing Twitter post:
This is a very interesting shirt that Patriots GM Bill Belichick has on. It reminds me of that video of a police dog mauling a Black man pic.twitter.com/7TpJeq2ThR
— Tariq Nasheed (@tariqnasheed) July 13, 2017
[Source: Twitter/Tariq Nasheed]
But Nasheed also attacked War For the Planet of the Apes due the apes donning blue vests—he claimed it was insulting BlackLivesMatter. (Apparently, BLM’s DeRay Mckesson often wears a similar-looking vest. Yeah, they totally had that in mind when laying out the movie poster. Riiigghhht.)
There was also VICE’s sports writer, Sean Newell, who said the shirt is “…pretty weird! Some might even say offensive.”
Even the “Life is great” caption was under attack, as it’s supposedly a demeaning riff on Boston-based-company Life is Good, which has products that seemingly cater to a specific market.
While tactical-animal-organization Trident K-9 felt the need to no longer advertise the shirt on their site, the product was featured with the following copy: “If you are a military K-9 handler, then life is great! Celebrate the end of Osama Bin Laden with this T-shirt.”
However, Belichick had at least one, known entity supporting him—The Boston Herald. Reporter Tom Shattuck confidently wrote, “[the shirt] shows Bill Belichick to be a true patriot.” (What’s the big deal with a guy wearing a shirt that supports US troops??)
Former-Navy Seal & Trident K-9 CEO Jim Amann, who did a K-9-aided tour in Iraq, explained to The Herald that Belichick’s tee “tells a cartoon story of a deployment in Afghanistan where SEAL operators are chasing bad guys.” (It’s not like the shirt conveys violence toward all Middle Easterners. Further, what if the proverbial shoe was on the other foot; would liberals be hating on such an illustration?)
All this stemmed from a non sequitur: Kathryn Mastomarino posted Belichick’s photo on social media after her friend saw the New England Patriots coach in Nantucket. Honestly, can we not simply live life and wear anything we feel without some folks spinning and blowing trivial material out of proportion? (That behavior falls into the realm of censorship, no?)