What We Tolerate and Why

Published: January 4, 2022

By Jim Lichtman
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Twitter permanently suspended Georgia’s Republican Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene from the social media website after she tweeted, falsely, “extremely high amounts of Covid vaccine deaths.”

After a discussion on the sidelines during last Sunday’s game, Buccaneers football wide receiver, Antonio Brown took off his gear and left the field during a game.

Happy New Year and welcome to disrespectful, reckless behavior by a US representative and a star football player.

What is not surprising is that Brown’s previous record of bad behavior, and Greene’s continued disinformation–both without serious consequences–is just another indication of how America’s culture and political landscape have deteriorated.

In Greene’s case, she’s simply following the Trump playbook: bad behavior draws attention which leads to “credibility” with a vocal base of supporters amid the wildfire of lies Trump continues to spread. In February, Greene was removed from her House committee assignments “for her history of trafficking in racism, anti-Semitism and baseless conspiracy theories, along with her support for online comments encouraging violence against Democratic officials before taking office,” NPR reported. The vote was 230-199. Eleven Republicans—who believe in respect and responsibility—joined Democrats.

Considering further admonishment, Nancy Pelosi had to make a political calculation. If the House speaker takes additional action against Greene, the Georgia representative would simply use the notoriety to raise more money for her re-election. Lesson: infamy is more profitable than decency and lies.

Both Greene and Brown get away with they’re behavior because they’re not held accountable. For decades many in the spotlight are treated to a different standard than the rest of us. They’re accepted, tolerated for reprehensible behavior because of the money and influence they bring to an organization. Without accountability, you risk the moral, and ultimately, the success of the rest of the organization.

“He is no longer a Buc.”

That’s how Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians addressed Brown’s behavior. Sadly, Coach Arians is the exception not the rule.

Throughout history, we have revered high-profile individuals for inspiring us.

Faced with low troop moral, George Washington inspired his troops into battle and achieved success; Lincoln faced an uphill battle to abolish slavery; Jackie Robinson’s restraint and respect led the way for Blacks and other minorities in the world of sports. Ronald Reagan, Jessie Owens, Martin Luther King, Charles Lindbergh, Amelia Earhart, both Roosevelts, Muhammad Ali, Colin Powell, Mark Twain, Helen Keller, Rosa Parks, Thomas Edison, the Wright Brothers, John Glenn, Neil Armstrong–hundreds, thousands inspired us to do better, be better.

Marjorie Taylor Greene doesn’t inspire anyone except those who believe her lies, and Antonio Brown has zero respect for the players, coaches, team owners and anyone else he works with.

And these people are given a pass on their behavior?

Georgia voters need to ask themselves, “Is Marjorie Taylor Greene really the person you want representing you in Congress?

Sports team owners need to ask, “Are star players like Antonio Brown really worth having on your team?”

And Donald Trump supporters need to ask, “Does this man inspire you and your kids to do better, be better human beings?”

Of all the things we need to fix in this country, this is the easiest:

Don’t make irresponsible behavior acceptable.


  1. I still like others to drive on the right side of the road–for my safety and theirs. It seems like Greene really wants the infamy and while Brown has unacceptable behavior, unfortunately I think he may have some mental imbalances. “Don’t make irresponsible behavior acceptable.”

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