Brittney Griner is free.
I’d love to talk about one of the best women’s basketball players of all time returning home after being held as a political prisoner over a vape pen… but enough of you have made today’s events about YOU, YOUR morals, YOUR preferences, and YOUR politics, that I’m not sure it’s even possible to talk about Brittney Griner.
So let’s talk about you.
You don’t think the Biden administration should have traded a convicted arms dealer for a female basketball player, especially with former Marine reservist and Iraq War veteran Paul Whelan going on four years behind bars for what may or may not be false charges of espionage.
That’s sensible I guess.
But my question for you is this. When did you first learn Paul Whelan’s name? When was the first time you appealed directly to the Biden administration for his release? Or the Trump administration before that? Or at the very least, publicly posted on any social media platform to alert your followers of a cause that today’s events have revealed is apparently so near and dear to your heart?
Go ahead. Pause the video and look it up for me.
Was it before Brittney Griner’s detention? And if not, are you prepared to keep that same energy from here forward, to pressure our leaders to negotiate the release of political prisoners from vindictive, undemocratic countries?
Maybe you’re completely committed to fighting the injustice of Brittney Griner’s release in the face of Paul Whelan’s continued detention on behalf of the Whelan family. Surely they must be furious at this inexplicable injustice, and you’re just doing your part on their behalf, with their blessing.
It’s not like Paul Whelan has a twin brother out here saying something to the effect of “I am so glad Brittney Griner is on her way home,” or “The Biden Administration made the right decision to bring Ms. Griner home, and make the deal that was possible, rather than waiting for one that wasn’t going to happen.”
Can you imagine if Paul Whelan had a twin brother named David that said those exact things today? That would mean that your outrage wasn’t about the family at all. Wouldn’t that be embarrassing?
Or maybe you just want to make sure that a member of the United States armed forces is treated with dignity and has his needs prioritized. You’re pro-military. That’s it, right? You’re so pro military you have the same rules as USAA- you don’t just care about our troops, you care about their families. So if former Marine Paul Whelan hypothetically had a daughter imprisoned in Russia, you’d probably rather have her home than Brittney Griner, right?
Wouldn’t it be crazy if there was someone out there named Raymond Griner that served two tours in Vietnam and spent 30 years as a cop, hoping for someone as pro military as yourself to come along and reward the sacrifice he made on your behalf to help get his daughter home? I’d imagine that would motivate someone as pro military as yourself into action.
Or maybe you just spent too much time on ESPN’s trade machine, and you don’t want a war criminal back on the St. Petersburg streets because it’s an objectively unfair price for this country to pay. Certainly you’ve known of Viktor Bout’s imprisonment since the Bush justice department pursued him, and the Obama administration extradited and imprisoned him. And I know that you can provide lots of public evidence that you’ve posted about how important an asset he is to the American government in hostage negotiations. Posts that you definitely made before Brittney Griner’s arrest. You can show me all that, right?
Look, maybe you just want the Secretary of State to publicly acknowledge how lopsided and unpopular this is. I’ll do you a favor. Let me read this direct quote from the Secretary of State. “We acknowledge that the release of these prisoners is unpopular, but this difficult action will lead to an important result…”
Oh wait, my mistake. That was Donald Trump’s Secretary of State talking about the release they negotiated of 5,000 imprisoned members of Taliban and ISIS, 400 of which were said by the Afghan government to be “convicted of serious crimes, including the killing of Afghans and citizens of the international community.”
Ah, that’s my bad guys. I’m positive you’ll also be able to provide me with several examples of the outrage you publicly expressed when Donald Trump’s treaty to get us out of Afghanistan called for the release of nearly 5,000 Taliban and ISIS soldiers. I didn’t mean to make more work for you, but I know you’re consistent, so I’ll wait here while you gather that up.
But hey, there’s always the few of you that just don’t think the United States should be doing anything to negate the foreign punishment of a spoiled athlete that hates America. After all, Brittney Griner called for an end to the playing of the national anthem before WNBA games.
It doesn’t matter that Brittney Griner was specifically protesting the unjust killing of Breonna Taylor at the hands of the Louisville, Kentucky police. It doesn’t matter that Griner repeatedly said that she loves the police, and grew up wanting to be a police officer like her father. It also doesn’t matter that she repeatedly said she supports the idea of a new national anthem, rather than stand for one that includes an unsung third verse about hunting down rebel slaves.
It’s the principle of the matter. This is America. You can’t just go around protesting our hallowed institutions because a woman got shot by law enforcement. And you, you’re consistent. It’s not like you’re out here calling for justice for Ashli Babbitt.
Certainly you’ve thought this through. You’ve been consistent. You cared about the executive branch’s role in political prisoner negotiations long before Brittney Griner was detained, and you’re going to keep caring long after she’s been freed. I’m definitely going to see you at the rallies to release Paul Whelan, and I’m definitely not going to see you doing anything but deferring to the statements and wishes of his loved ones.
You certainly condemned Trump’s prisoner release, and you’re not partisan at all, so you’ll do the same when the next republican president is faced with a similar decision.
And every time someone brings up January 6th, I’m going to hear you talking about how the police have a hard job, and how anyone that protests the convictions that came out of the events that day hate America, and are criminals that deserve to be punished to the fullest extent of the law.
Because today’s energy has always been your energy, right?
Let that sink in.