As the WNBA season kicked off on Saturday, the New York Liberty and Seattle Storm teams disrespected America by leaving the court during the national anthem.
The players reportedly left the court as a peaceful protest before holding a 26-second moment of silence for Breonna Taylor, the 26-year-old black woman who was killed at her home by Louisville, Kentucky police earlier this year, according to the New York Post. All of the players also had Taylor’s name on the back of their jerseys.
“We are dedicating this season to Breonna Taylor, an outstanding EMT who was murdered over 130 days ago in her home,” Liberty player Layshia Clarendon announced at mid-court, alongside Storm star Breanna Stewart, before the opening tip-off at the IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida.
“Breonna Taylor was dedicated and committed to uplifting everyone around here,” she added. “We are also dedicating this season to ‘Say Her Name” campaign, a campaign committed to saying the names and fighting for justice of black women – black women are so often forgotten in this fight for justice, who don’t have people marching in the streets for them. We will say her name. Sandra Bland. Atatiana Jefferson. Dominique Remy Fells. Breonna Taylor. We will be a voice for the voiceless.”
— ESPN (@espn) July 25, 2020
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The Liberty team also donated $25,000 to the African American Policy Forum and the #SayHerName campaign.
This comes after various professional baseball teams took a knee during the national anthem before their games as their season started last week. Hall of Fame football coach and former NFL broadcaster Mike Ditka has fired back at the resurgence of protests in which athletes kneel during the national anthem, offering some choice words for those who partake in this.
“If you can’t respect our national anthem, get the hell out of the country. That’s the way I feel,” Ditka said, according to USA Today. “Of course, I’m old fashioned. So, I’m only going to say what I feel… You don’t protest against the flag, and you don’t protest against this country who’s given you the opportunities to make a living playing a sport that you never thought would happen. So, I don’t want to hear all the crap.”
This piece was written by PopZette Staff on July 26, 2020. It originally appeared in LifeZette and is used by permission.
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