Woke narcissism destroys everything, including the joy of innocence.
Once the destruction has occurred, however, it brings great satisfaction to see the joy renewed in an act of defiance.
Wednesday on “Jesse Watters Primetime,” a 9-year-old Kansas City Chiefs fan — accompanied by his father — resolved to continue wearing the black and red face paint that left full-grown adults triggered and complaining of racism over the weekend.
You read that correctly. And if you cannot imagine the sheer narcissism required to shame a child for “racist” face paint, then keep reading.
On Sunday in Las Vegas, 9-year-old Holden Armenta painted his face in the Chiefs’ black and red team colors, donned a Native American costume headdress and cheered his favorite team to a 31-17 victory over the Las Vegas Raiders.
In addition to witnessing the victory, Holden Armenta enjoyed getting his picture taken with four Raiders cheerleaders. From his family’s seats behind the visitors’ bench, he also got some of his favorite team’s players to join him in doing the Chiefs’ signature “tomahawk chop,” a celebratory gesture also performed by fans of baseball’s Atlanta Braves and college football’s Florida State Seminoles. All in all, it should have been a wonderfully memorable day for a young football fan.
Alas, the woke bogeyman lurked in his online lair to squelch all happiness.
After CBS showed young Holden Armenta during its broadcast of the game — and in particular when a camera angle made it appear that he wore blackface — multiple leftist sports media outlets raised the familiar and oh-so-tiresome cry of “racism.”
The worst offender by far was Deadspin’s Carron J. Phillips, a woke bully posing as a sports journalist.
“It takes a lot to disrespect two groups of people at once. But on Sunday afternoon in Las Vegas, a Kansas City Chiefs fan found a way to hate black people and the Native Americans at the same time,” Phillips wrote in a hit piece … on a 9-year-old.
Actually, it does not take as much as Phillips thinks. After all, I just disrespected woke bullies and posers, two groups of people with whom Phillips happens to intersect.
Then, on Monday, Holden Armenta’s mother Shannon Armenta revealed via Facebook that her family descends from Native Americans. According to Watters, the Armenta family once lived on the Chumash reservation in California.
None of that should matter, of course. A Scandinavian child could do exactly as Holden Armenta did without incurring the wrath of anyone but narcissistic scolds like Phillips. The boy’s Native American heritage merely adds a layer of irony and showcases the woke media’s chutzpah.
Therein lay the context for Holden Armenta’s appearance on Watters’ show.
“Holden can wear whatever he wants. And Americans can wear whatever we want,” Watters said before introducing Holden and his father, Bubba Armenta.
Understandably, Bubba Armenta has felt both overwhelmed and angry about the national attention and the cancel-culture mob targeting his son.
“It’s been a lot. It’s been a pretty crazy couple days. I was mad, upset — upset for him — mad that he’s upset,” Bubba Armenta said.
Indeed, even at so young an age, Holden Armenta seems to understand part of what has happened.
“It’s OK cause a lot of kids at school are getting excited. But it’s starting to get me a little nervous because if they go a little bit overboard, it’s a little scary,” the young fan said.
But destroyed innocence has a powerful weapon in defiance. Holden Armenta plays wide receiver and free safety on his youth football team. He identified Chiefs’ quarterback Patrick Mahomes as his favorite player. In fact, after the interview with Watters, the boy went to football practice. In other words, he kept doing what he loves.
Best of all, he has no plans to change.
“He asked me ten minutes ago if he can paint his face before we go live,” Bubba Armenta said of his son.
Watters laughed and then asked if Bubba Armenta expects an apology from Phillips and Deadspin.
“I don’t even know what to think about that. It’s kind of — it’s a little too late for that. The damage is already done,” the father said.
That damage, of course, has come in the form of unwarranted scrutiny.
“It’s been a whirlwind of comments coming even from other tribes, from tribal members. Some think it’s OK. Some think it’s not OK. It’s a 9-year-old boy supporting his team,” Bubba Armenta said.
Readers can watch the entire interview here:
In the end, nothing can erase that fact. Phillips and Deadspin targeted a 9-year-old boy supporting his team. And they did so believing that they have moral authority. Nothing more clearly defines woke narcissism.
But Holden Armenta and many other Chiefs fans must continue to wear the face paint, headdresses or whatever they want.
In fact, while watching my Pittsburgh Steelers this weekend, I plan to do the tomahawk chop. Just because.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.