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More Than Athletes

February 19, 2018

No one told King David to just play his harp and not to stand up for his people. No one told Samson to just lift weights and not to challenge the Philistines. No one told Mandela to just be a lawyer. He spent years in prison for the right to vote and became a role model for the world.

 

When some small-minded pundits told Jackie Robinson to just play baseball, he said, "Give me my dignity." When Dr. King was told to stay confined to his pulpit, he did not listen. He stood up and spoke out for peace. 

 

LeBron James, your slam dunk for justice is needed. Thank you and Steph Curry, Kevin Durant and Colin Kaepernick for taking a stand – and a knee – for justice.

 

You are more than just athletes.

 

In the best tradition of great sportsmen-and-women, please continue using your platform to speak truth to power.

 

Curt Flood wouldn’t settle with being sold like a slave to another team. He spoke out and hence free agency.

 

Muhammad Ali refused to just throw punches and shut up. He spoke out against an unjust war and inspired a generation.

 

Billie Jean King didn’t just chase tennis balls. She took a stand for equality on and off the court. Venus and Serena Williams are following in her footsteps.

 

LeBron you are in mighty good company.

 

  

-30-

 

Don Terry
dterry@rainbowpush.org

 

Rainbow PUSH Coalition is a multi-racial, multi-issue, progressive, international organization that was formed in December 1996 by the Reverend Jesse L. Jackson, Sr. through merging of two organizations he founded Operation PUSH People United to Serve Humanity (estab. 1971) and the Rainbow Coalition (estab. 1984). With headquarters in Chicago and offices in Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, New York and Oakland, the organization works to make the American Dream a reality for all citizens while advocating for peace and justice around the world. RPC is dedicated to improving the lives of all people by serving as a voice for the voiceless. Its mission is to protect, defend and gain civil rights by leveling the economic and educational playing fields while promoting peace and justice around the world.

 

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