Written by: Leighton Piper On Wednesday afternoon, the NBA’s Milwaukee Bucks refused to play their playoff game against the Orlando Magic in protest of the recent shooting of Jacob Blake. The Milwaukee Brewers followed suit in their game with the Cincinnati Reds. The Washington Mystics of the WNBA wore shirts with seven bullet holes in the back, representing the shots Kenosha police took on Mr. Blake, in their playoff game.
Athletes all across the country are taking a stand in response to police brutality, and two universities that we cover quite frequently, The University of Kentucky and The University of Tennessee, have taken their own stands in effort to bring attention to this problem. Thursday afternoon, the wildcats left practice in support of the recent protests. The volunteers are participating in a march for social justice today at noon, the march will be led by Volunteers Offensive Lineman Trey Smith.
In a time where so many are telling athletes to “stick to sports”, I say thank you. Thank you to these athletes for using their voice and their platform to make this issue be heard. I urge you to keep going, to keep fighting for what is right, to continue to be heard. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” We are in very challenging times, and you all are leading the way to a future where in this nation we see to it that every man, woman, and child is not judged based on the color of their skin, but the content of their character.
Today, I am as proud as ever—in a year where we may not even get a football season—to be a Kentucky Wildcat, and to now support the Volunteers. Stay strong and keep the course, you all are creating the history we will tell our grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Go Big Blue and Go Big Orange.