With conversations swirling around Colin Kaepernick and the fact that he wasn't signed by any team this year (a fact many feel is related to his national anthem protests), all eyes are on sports organizations right now.
Other NFL players have shown solidarity with Kaepernick. And last time we checked, the NFL said it was willing to provide Kaepernick “PR guidance.” However, nothing substantial has transpired from that offer as of yet.
The WNBA has taken a different route, encouraging its players' desire to take a stand on the issues of the day.
And now, the NBA is following in the WNBA's footsteps.
This week, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver directly encouraged NBA players to provide social commentary in a letter addressed to the players, ESPN reports.
He sent the letter the same day that Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett claimed that a Las Vegas cop racially profiled and harassed him.
"None of us operate in a vacuum," Silver wrote. "Critical issues that affect our society also impact you directly … You have real power to make a difference in the world."
Silver didn’t go into specifics such as citing Black Lives Matter and the like, but overall, he believes that his players have a platform that showcases far beyond their athletic talents.
"The NBA is of course about much more than a game," the letter said. "Let's continue to use this incredible platform to help and engage with people everywhere — what we say and do together matters more than ever."
The letter follows a similar one sent by the NBA before the start of last season, right around the time Colin Kaepernick’s national anthem protest began.
NBA players have a history of being outspoken when it comes to racism, such as when LeBron James’ home was vandalized with a racial slur.
The player was later quoted as saying "Hate in America, especially for African Americans, is living every day."
Carmelo Anthony hosted a town hall to discuss police and race relations in South Central L.A. last summer, and of course we can’t ever forget the time James, Dwyane Wade and Kobe Bryant wore “I Can’t Breathe” shirts during pre-game warmups two seasons ago.
Overall, sports players' lives are affected by the same social issues we all face, and it is good to know that one of the organizations that supports them has their back.