Former Army Ranger and Afghanistan veteran Spenser Rapone received an ‘other than honorable’ discharge after he posted images taken at his 2016 graduation from the United States Military Academy at West Point. In the pictures, he was wearing a t-shirt depicting famous socialist Che Guevara under his uniform and had also written the phrase ‘Communism Will Win’ under his cap.
Rapone posted the photos to his social media account back in September, which immediately created a fiery reaction, including death threats. Senator Marco Rubio even called him a “national security threat,” saying that top officials should delve deeply into his online activity. Others were more sympathetic, saying that the right to free speech obviously extends to members of the armed forces.
Rapone informed the Associated Press that he posted the photos to his Twitter in solidarity with Colin Kaepernick, the one-time NFL quarterback who inspired hundreds of players across various sports to kneel during the national anthem in order to protest police brutality against minorities. He also went on to say that his time in Afghanistan as an assistant machine-gunner in the dangeous Khost province inspired him take on his radical social views.
"Commie cadet" Spenser Rapone says: "We have one of the most technologically advanced militaries of all time and all we were doing is brutalizing and invading." https://t.co/iGzaKByq0r— AP Eastern US (@APEastRegion) June 19, 2018
What do you think? Were Rapone’s social media posts warranted and thought-provoking, simply an example of how free speech can inspire change in any sphere, or was it an offensive, anti-American sentiment that he should’ve kept to himself? Tell us your thoughts in the comments down below!