With the NBA’s 2020 season still very much up-in-the-air on account of the rising number of coronavirus cases in the United States, the last thing that the league needs is more controversy.
The league hopes to continue their season within a few weeks, utilizing the massive Wide World of Sports Complex owned by ESPN in Orlando, Florida. Of course, with The Sunshine State’s COVID caseload on the rise, even the most cautious plans look poised for failure.
Occurring concurrently to the global coronavirus pandemic is a bit of a racial revolution in the United States, in which the American people have begun demanding the liberty and justice for all that we were promised by our Founding Fathers. Much of this sentiment has been expressed in the form of protests, which have in the past included prominent athletes kneeling during the playing of The National Anthem in order to draw attention to themselves and their cause.
This has been controversial, as expected, and those who were offended by the protest largely abandoned the NFL after several players followed Colin Kaepernick’s lead in kneeling.
Should the NBA resume play in 2020, there will undoubtedly be plenty of these protests…and at least one team owner seems to be encouraging it.
Mark Cuban, owners of the Dallas Mavericks, spoke about the issue on The View on Wednesday:
Cuban said, “You know, we’ll see what the NBA comes down in terms of the actual rules, but we’re in a different time. Things are changing. The last five weeks have seen a dramatic shift in how people in this country are responding to systemic racism. Because we’ve seen such dramatic change, I want to be part of the solution, and you’ve got to let go of the old ways that just were not working. If that means going against the grain, and maybe upsetting a few people, so be it.”
He added, “If our guys want to kneel, I think that’s a great step forward. Look. I’ll add this. You know, all this discussion of kneeling and the flag has got to be again about the Pledge of Allegiance, and the best part about the Pledge of Allegiance is when you pledge allegiance to the flag, it’s for liberty and justice for all. I think players and anybody who addresses the flag and kneels, really is just standing up for that pledge they made for liberty and justice for all because that’s truly what we need in this country, and as NBA players or any athletes anywhere who push further in that direction, that’s a beautiful thing.”
Cuban had stated in previous seasons that he was not in favor of kneeling protests, but has appeared to change his tune.
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