The NBA and WNBA are composed of Black athletes and social justice advocates who are now using their platforms to initiate change and reverse systemic racism. The mega corporations have formed two new platforms, The Justice Movement and the Social Justice Council.
Led by top ballplayers Layshia Clarendon, Sydney Colson and Breanna Stewart, they will host community conversations, virtual round tables and player-produced podcasts discussing systemic racism.
To kick off the initiative, the 2020 WNBA season will begin with a weekend of competition honoring the Black Lives Matter movement. Uniforms will be worn, sharing the names of: Sandra Bland, Breonna Taylor, Vanessa Guillen and many more killed by police brutality.
In addition, “Black Lives Matter” will be displayed on the courts through the season. To learn more visit the WNBA website.
Many fans and social activists would like to see the names on the front of the jerseys instead of the back so people will be forced to see them. The NBA and NBPA released their approved jersey messages list earlier this month as well, they are as follows:
Black Lives Matter; Say Their Names; Vote; I Can’t Breathe; Justice; Peace; Equality; Freedom; Enough; Power to the People; Justice Now; Say Her Name; Sí Se Puede (Yes We Can); Liberation; See Us; Hear Us; Respect Us; Love Us; Listen; Listen to Us; Stand Up; Ally; Anti-Racist; I Am A Man; Speak Up; How Many More; Group Economics; Education Reform; and Mentor.
The NBA season resumes on July 30 with seeding games in Orlando, Florida, where the “bubble” includes their own barbershop. The NBA is also displaying the “Black Lives Matter” message on their courts throughout the exhibition, seeding and playoff games.
Photo via Malika Andrews