2014-02-28 / Columnists

An Intern’s Take

Sports Stars Play It Safe
By Ilyassha Shivers

When this month began who would have thought that the NBA and the NFL would be making such socially conscious decisions? This week the first openly gay basketball player stepped foot on court. At the same time, football players found out that use of the n-word on the field will result in a fifteen yard penalty. So once again, it seems that sports have taken on society's ills.

At first I was disturbed by both, what right do they have to be a moral authority? African-Americans make up more than 60 percent of the total player population. Yet in both sports those numbers are not reflected in management or ownership. Some of us may remember the attacks that Adrian Peterson received when he compared playing in the NFL like being on a plantation. I don't know if I would go that far, but I will say that he’s not that far off. Today's athletes stay away from fighting for the rights of the people. I don't mean to keep pointing to the 1960s but that was a time when Muhammad Ali was protesting the Vietnam War and Jim Brown was involved in the struggle for civil rights. It breaks my heart that our high profile super athletes fail to use their positions to fight for change. There is a saying that goes something like this "if you don’t stand for something you will fall for anything."

Many stars of today don’t have a clue. They think they are on top of the world and every smiling face means them well. There was a guy who thought he was on top of the world, until we saw him trying to ride off in the back of a white Bronco.

So there you have it. Tell me what you think. Send your thoughts and comments to shiverswave@gmail.com. And don't forget to read The Wave.

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