Chris Pratt has tweeted out an apparent biblical takedown of the media freakout over his choice of American flag T-shirt.
Last week, Pratt was spotted in Los Angeles wearing the black shirt, which featured a coiled snake over an American flag. Beneath the flag appeared the words, “Don’t Tread on Me.”
The slogan-snake combo can be traced back to the “Gadsden flag,” which was created by American colonists to rally opposition to British rule ahead of the Revolutionary War. These days, it appears on the U.S. naval jack and on at least seven state license plates.
Libertarian groups, U.S. Men’s Soccer and Metallica have also made use of the symbol.
Still, a number of news outlets reported on Pratt’s sartorial selection as a scandal, citing backlash from some Twitter users who deemed the Gadsden flag a symbol of racism and white supremacy.
On Thursday, as the uproar was dying down, Pratt weighed in with a verse from the Book of Proverbs.
“For lack of wood the fire goes out. And where there is no whisperer quarreling ceases,” he tweeted.
“For lack of wood the fire goes out. And where there is no whisperer quarreling ceases”
Have a great day everybody! 🙏🇺🇸♥️
— chris pratt (@prattprattpratt) July 18, 2019
Rekindling the flames out outrage
While Pratt quoted a translation in line with the English Standard Version of the Bible, other authoritative sources use “gossip” in place of “whisperer.” In other words, Pratt seemed to be calling out the rumor mongers who managed to be triggered by his simple act of patriotism.
At least that’s what both his haters and supporters took him to be saying.
Many commenters were scandalized all over again.
Congrats, you’ve cemented your place among all the racist fearmongers that wouldn’t know the Constitution and what freedom is really about if it landed on their head. Can’t wait for you to be sitting in a chair and talking to air at the next Reich….errr, I mean RNC convention.
— GoodBoy Bubba (@mmonge77) July 18, 2019
Others mocked the outrage and voiced their support for Pratt.
Don’t ever change!
— Molly (@MarlaBordelon1) July 18, 2019
Is Chris Pratt offensively Christian?
Pratt, the star of Marvel’s “Guardians of the Galaxy” franchise, has repeatedly faced criticism for his alleged lack of wokeness. Last December, TV Guide alerted readers to his “problematic aspects of his offscreen life.”
“When you take a deeper look at Pratt the man and not necessarily Pratt the actor, some of the shine wears off,” averred senior editor Kaitlin Thomas. “Although he can be as funny offscreen as he is on — his recurring ‘What’s My Snack’ videos on Instagram are almost always delightful — it’s impossible to ignore some problematic aspects of his life offscreen.”
The article went on to essentially point out that Pratt is a white man who openly celebrates Christianity and hunting.
Long annoyed by the media and elite culture’s treatment of Pratt, conservatives reacted with scorn to the latest instance of “callout culture” run amok.
Actress and social media influencer Mindy Robinson accused Yahoo News of hating Pratt “because he is a Christian and a patriot.
“Go f_ck yourself,” she added.
Dear @YahooEnt “News”
Your article on Chris Pratt wearing a “white supremacist” shirt is complete leftist bullsh*t.
It’s a pro-2A shirt, which is one of our constitutional rights. You hate him because he is Christian and a patriot. Go f_ck yourself.https://t.co/MPjthezZ8u
— Mindy Robinson 🇺🇸 (@iheartmindy) July 17, 2019
Yahoo News has a history of somewhat tendentious coverage of the online culture wars. A week earlier, the outlet published a dubious “expose” about how House Republicans had supposedly darkened Colin Kaepernick’s skin a photo sent out in a fundraising email.
Loving to hate hate
The Gadsden flag, of course, is not the only American flag to have triggered outrage of late.
Earlier this month, former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick helped convince Nike to nix the planned rollout of a Fourth of July-themed sneaker that featured another American Revolutionary flag. According to the Wall Street Journal, Kaepernick complained to the company, for which he is an endorser, that the 13-starred “Betsy Ross flag” is offensive because of its supposed connection to slavery.
In 2016, Kaepernick began kneeling as the national anthem played at games to draw attention to systemic American racism. U.S. women’s soccer star Megan Rapinoe picked up the protest this year during her team’s run to World Cup victory.
Meanwhile, some activists have declared the OK hand gesture off limits because of its trollish appropriation by alt-right figures.
The Anti-Defamation League initially rejected equating the “OK” symbol with white supremacy However, the organization has since updated a blog post on their site with a more expanded discussion of the issue. According to the anti-Semitism watchdog, only “if the gesture occurs in context with other clear indicators of white supremacy can one” conclude that “such a gesture is intending or exhibiting an association with white supremacy.”
The ADL noted “that the ‘OK’ gesture is a nearly universal hand gesture and most usage of it is completely innocuous.”