Military officials are launching an investigation to the “OK” hand symbol that was flashed by cadets prior to the Army-Navy game in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on Saturday. The cadets could be seen joking behind ESPN’s Rece Davis while making the sign.
The sign drew outrage from some progressive activists on social media who claim the hand sign is a symbol of “white power.”
Because of the outrage, the investigation was launched.
We’re looking into it,” West Point representative Lt. Col. Chris Ophardt told The Wall Street Journal. “I don’t know what their intention is.” Annapolis spokeswoman Cmdr. Alana Garas added: “We are aware and will be looking into it.”
Of course, while some were saying the sign meant “white power”, others dismissed the gesture and criticism by saying the cadets were simply playing the circle game.
The narrative that the okay hand symbol is a racist, white power sign began on 4chan where users were looking for a way to troll liberals and the media. With the outrage that happens every time we see the symbol used on television, it is clear they were successful.
From the Anti-Defamation League:
In 2017, the “okay” hand gesture acquired a new and different significance thanks to a hoax by members of the website 4chan to falsely promote the gesture as a hate symbol, claiming that the gesture represented the letters “wp,” for “white power.” The “okay” gesture hoax was merely the latest in a series of similar 4chan hoaxes using various innocuous symbols; in each case, the hoaxers hoped that the media and liberals would overreact by condemning a common image as white supremacist. In the case of the “okay” gesture, the hoax was so successful the symbol became a popular trolling tactic on the part of right-leaning individuals, who would often post photos to social media of themselves posing while making the “okay” gesture.
Or maybe, just maybe, they were playing an immature game.